BENGALURU THURSDAY NOVEMBER 24, 2022 `9.00 PAGES 24 LATE CITY EDITION SCOTTISH GOVT LOSES COURT BATTLE FOR REFERENDUM Britain’s Supreme Court has ruled that Scotland’s government can’t hold an independence referendum without UK’s consent Nicola Sturgeon, SNP leader and first minister of Scotland | AP U.K. PARLIAMENT REFUSES TO GIVE CONSENT RISHI SUNAK WELCOMES ‘DEFINITIVE RULING’ The Scottish National Party (SNP) wanted a second referendum on October 19, 2023 but the UK Parliament refused to grant a formal consent. Supreme Court president Lord Reed said the laws that created the devolved Scottish Parliament in 1999 meant it does not have power over areas of the constitution including the union between Scotland and England | P14 ■ ■ Welcoming the verdict, UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak termed it a “clear and definitive ruling from the Supreme Court” SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon said her party respects the court’s decision but added that the next general election in 2024 will be a ‘de facto referendum’ where people will express their will 2014 THE SCOTS REJECTED THE FIRST REFERENDUM, HELD WITH THE U.K.’S APPROVAL, BY 55-45% CHENNAI ■ MADURAI ■ VIJAYAWADA ■ BENGALURU ■ KOCHI ■ HYDERABAD ■ VISAKHAPATNAM ■ COIMBATORE ■ KOZHIKODE ■ THIRUVANANTHAPURAM ■ BELAGAVI ■ BHUBANESWAR ■ SHIVAMOGGA ■ MANGALURU ■ TIRUPATI ■ TIRUCHY ■ TIRUNELVELI ■ SAMBALPUR ■ HUBBALLI ■ DHARMAPURI ■ KOTTAYAM ■ KANNUR ■ VILLUPURAM ■ KOLLAM ■ TADEPALLIGUDEM ■ NAGAPATTINAM ■ THRISSUR ■ KALABURAGI Appointment of new EC Arun Goel under SC lens EFFECTIVE TODAY Price of KMF milk and curd goes up by `2 Constitution bench says it wants to check if there was any ‘hanky-panky’ in the process; govt directed to submit files today EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE @ Bengaluru STARTING Thursday pay more , for milk and curd as the Karnataka Milk Federation (KMF) Board on Wednesday decided to increase the price of the two dairy products by Rs 2. With this, the price of Nandini toned milk will go up to Rs 39 per litre and curd to Rs 47 per litre. KMF had placed the demand before the government to increase the prices by Rs 3 sometime ago. But Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai had to intervene as the move attracted intense criticism. He later held a meeting with KMF officials and asked them not to go for a steep hike and to ensure that it does not MILK cause losses to farmers or become a burden to consumers. KMF had then sought one day to decide. KMF stated that they are only the second state in the country to pay the highest compensation to farmers. For every Re 1 collected from consumers, 79 paise is paid to f ar mers. On an avera g e, Rs 28 crore is handed out to farmers every day . In the last two years, the cost of maintaining cattle has gone up. “Keeping the welfare of farmers in mind, it has become necessary to increase the price of milk. The Karnataka milk price is lower compared to other states and also cheaper than other brands,” it said. The last time the price of milk and curd was increased was in February 2020. Product Existing rate (a litre/kg) Revised rate (a litre/kg) Toned milk D 37 D39 Homogenised toned milk D38 D40 Special Milk D43 D45 Homogenised standard milk D44 D46 Santrupthi milk D50 D52 Double toned milk D36 D38 Curd per kilo D45 D47 told the bench that Goel, a 1985 you are claiming that everybatch IAS officer of Punjab thing is going on smoothly We . TAKING note of the alacrity cadre and a secretary-level of- don’t think it’s a matter where with which the government ficial, was given VRS on Friday we should be withholding ingranted VRS to bureaucrat and appointed as EC on Satur- formation. This is not matter Arun Goel and appointed him day to enable him to start work- related to appointment of milias election commissioner, a ing from Monday . tary person.” five-judge Constitution bench “The government appointed The bench also observed that of the Supreme Court on someone in a single the Chief Election Wednesday ordered the Centre day and no one knows Commissioner should to submit all the original files what process was folbe a strong-willed perrelated to the appointment. lowed or what safeson who will not hesiThe five-judge bench headed guards were taken,” tate to act even against by Justice K M Joseph said it Bhushan said. the prime minister, if wants to know if there was any Asking Attor ney need be. “hanky-panky” because Goel’s General R Venkatara“Suppose there is appointment happened while it mani if the governsome allegation Arun Goel was hearing a plea seeking a ment has any hesitaagainst the prime mincollegium-like system for the tion in presenting the file, the ister and the CEC has to act. Election Commission of India. bench observed that the ap- But the CEC is weak-kneed. He The Centre should not have any pointment was inappropriate does not act. Is it not a complete problem submitting the rele- as the matter was being heard breakdown of the system? The vant files if everything was by the Constitution bench. CEC is supposed to be insulated done as per procedure, the When the AG objected to from political influence and bench observed. The court gave Goel’s appointment being should be independent,” the the Centre time till Thursday to dragged into a case where the bench remarked. produce the files. court is considering a larger isVenkataramani told the The direction came after sen- sue, Justice Joseph said, “We bench that there had to be a ior advocate Prashant Bhushan would like to know… because trigger point for the top court to interfere in such matters. The AG also told the bench that ‘NEED A CEC WHO CAN ACT EVEN AGAINST THE PM’ the appointments were on the The Constitution bench said the person appointed as the Chief Election basis on seniority and there Commissioner must be independent and should be willing to act even was no separate appointment against the prime minister in the event of serious allegations procedure for CEC. S H R U T I K A K K A R @ New Delhi Japan’s Ritsu Doan (R) scores his team’s first goal against Germany at the Khalifa International Stadium on Wednesday | AFP LAND OF RISING SONS E X P R E SS N E WS S E R V I C E Silence speaks louder Germany’s players covered their mouths for their team photo before the match in an apparent rebuke of FIFA’s clampdown on plans to wear armbands to protest discrimination in Qatar | AP JAPAN’S players did not know what to do apart from run in all directions. Some of them were going right, some were going straight, others left. All of them, though, had their arms outstretched. You didn’t need to know the scoreline. Japan had upset World Cup royalty, Germany The four-time champions . failed to kill the match and the Asian powerhouse won 2-1. Il- kay Gundogan had converted a first-half penalty and it was smooth sailing until Japan, who had the reached the last 16 in 2018, went for the jugular in the second half. They rung in the changes and drove at the heart of Germany’s creaking midfield till it crumbled like a house of cards. The defeat leaves Germany needing a result against Spain on Sunday. Or, it could be an early exit. State running out of govt land for schools: Ashoka A S H W I N I M S R I PA D @ Bengaluru KARNATAKA seems to be running out of government land. Raising an alert, Revenue Minister R Ashoka warned that in the next 10-12 years, it might be difficult to find land to construct government schools, hospitals and other infrastructure. He had earlier raised this issue with elected representatives, but is writing to them again to identify government properties in their constituencies. Ashoka is traveling across the state to take part in “Jilladhikari Nade Halli Kade”, where he stays in a village and listens to woes of residents. During such outings, he learnt that there is a shortage of land for schools, colleges, anganw a d i s, g r ave ya rd s, p l ay grounds, health centres and many such facilities. He had earlier written to all MLAs and MPs to identify government land for building essential infrastructure. “But none of them replied. I am going to write again,” he told TNIE. “The price of land is shooting up, and the gover nment cannot buy properties at such high prices. This is the time to save land for the future. Either the land has been encroached by individuals or organisations or it is being used for different purposes. We seek the support of legislators as they know their constituencies better,” P7 he added. MORE ON: P19 M’luru blast accused epitomises threat to state from highly radicalised youth B A L A C H A U H A N @Bengaluru THE November 19 blast in an autorickshaw in Mangaluru, in which key accused Mohammed Shariq (24) and autorickshaw driver Purushottam were injured, is an eye-opener on the emerging incidents of highly radicalised youth indulging in terrorist activities either alone or in fragmented and small networks to evade detection. This was Shariq’s third attempt at a terror-related activity since November 2020, in which he and an engineering student, Mazz Muneer Ahmed (21), were involved in the terror graffiti case in Mangaluru. Shariq was wanted in the Shivamogga blast and burning of the national flag case in NIA probing S’mogga blast Case to be soon handed to NIA CM seeks united intel sharing Shivamogga: The NIA has taken up the probe against three accused in the case of trial blast and burning of the national flag on the banks of Tunga river in Shivamogga. Mangaluru: Home Minister Araga Jnanendra said the Mangaluru blast case will be handed over to the NIA in a day or two for a comprehensive probe. Hassan: Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai said he will write to his counterparts in southern states for concerted and united intelligence sharing to to combat terror activities. September this year, in which Ahmed and another engineering graduate Syed Yasin (21), with alleged affiliation to the banned terrorist outfit Islamic State of Iraq & Syria (ISIS), were arrested. Investigation had revealed that they were mentored by Shariq, who went underground after he was released on bail in the graffiti case. The fact that the pressure cooker with the improvised explosive device (IED) that Shariq was carrying went off before its time proves it was an amateur attempt at bombmaking with batteries, wires, nuts and bolts and explosive chemicals that are easily available in the market. P6 EXPRESS READ Voter data theft case: Police grill 45 officials Bengaluru: Multiple police teams on Wednesday questioned nearly 45 revenue officials of the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike in connection with the case of voter data theft and revision of voter list. More officials will be questioned shortly to find out whether they are involved in the fraud, a police officer said. | P6 Deputy EC to visit BBMP head office today Bengaluru: The deputy Election Commissioner (DyEC), will visit the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike head office on Thursday to seek details of the voter data theft case and revision of the draft voters’ list. The Chief Election Commission has directed BBMP officials to keep all information ready, and cooperate with the DyEC. | P6 CRIME FILES Shraddha’s 2-yr-old SOS to Drug addict out of rehab kills Minor raped, parents allege police revealed Aaftab design four of his family in Delhi accused tried to convert her U J W A L J A L A L I @ New Delhi U J W A L J A L A L I @ New Delhi E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ Mysuru THE horrific case of murder and dismemberment of a woman in Delhi by her live-in partner took a new turn on Wednesday after the copy of a letter she wrote to the Maharashtra police exactly two years ago revealing his threats to “kill and cut her into pieces” surfaced. “Aaftab Amin Poonawala has been abusing me and beating me up. Today he tried to kill me by suffocating me and he scared and blackmails me that he will kill me cut me up in pieces and throw me away wrote Shraddha Walker ,” in a hand-written letter dated November 23, 2020. Shraddha was allegedly strangled on May 18 this year, her body chopped into multiple pieces and disposed of. Shraddha’s letter is now a crucial piece of evidence to establish Aaftab was a repeat offender and had a history of domestic violence. While the Palghar police acknowledged receipt of her letter, they claimed she had a subsequently written another letter withdrawing the complaint. “We went to their house twice. They told us that they have nothing against each other and had decided to withdraw the complaint as well. Therefore, after 26 days, we disposed of the complaint,” a police official said. Her letter revealed that Aaftab’s parents were aware of their son beating her up. “His parents are aware that he beats me and that he tried to kill me. They also know about us living together and they visit on weekends,” Shraddha’s letter read. A drug addict just out of rehab allegedly went on a killing spree, stabbing four members of his family in southwest Delhi’s Palam area, the police said on Wednesday . The mass murder took place late on Tuesday night. “A person made a PCR call around 10.30 pm claiming he was hearing sounds of quarrel in his neighbourhood after which the police immediately rushed to the location,” Deputy Police Commissioner (Southwest) Manoj C said. Accused Keshav (25) was caught by neighbours and the police while he was trying to bolt. He hacked his 75-yearold grandmother Diwano Devi, parents Dinesh and Darshan, and sister Urvashi with a sharp-edged weapon. One of the family members, while speaking to this newspaper, said the accused spent more than 30 months at a rehabilitation centre and had recently come out of it. “He was a drug addict and had frequent fights with his family. He used to nag them for money,” said Keshav’s cousin Kuldeep Saini, who stayed just a floor below. On Tuesday night, he heard a noisy quarrel and climbed the stairs to check. “I heard screams of my cousin Urvashi after which I rushed upstairs and started banging the door to know her welfare but none opened,” Kuldeep said. Keshav responded from inside asking him to buzz off as it was his family matter. “There was complete silence for 15 mins but in the meantime I had called the police. When the police arrived, Keshav jumped from the second floor to escape but we caught him,” Kuldeep said. AN alleged case of a rape of a minor girl and bid to convert her has come to light at a village in Nagamangala taluk of Mandya district. It is alleged that a 24-year-old man raped a 14-year-old girl and asked her to convert to Islam if she wants to marry him. The girl’s father, in a complaint filed with the Nagamangala police, alleged that the accused, Yonus Pasha, befriended his physically-challenged minor daughter studying in eighth grade. Pasha had given her a cellphone and reached it through one of his relatives, who used to travel with the girl in the school van, the complaint added. The girl later started talking to the accused over phone and had also sent some sleazy videos of hers to him. He had later threatened the girl that he would put the videos on social media if she refuses to have sex with him, the complaint stated. “He had handed her some sleeping pills asking her to make other members of the family sleep so that he could come to the house. After she followed his instructions and let him into the house, he raped her. He also told her that if she wished to marry him, she had to convert,” the complaint stated. The accused has been to police custody said Mandya SP , Yathish N. He has been booked under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (Pocso), IPC Sections 376(3), 354 (D), 450, 506, Information technology Act and Section 5 of the Karnataka Protecction of Rights to Freedom of Religion Ordinance 2022. Shraddha Walkar Fadnavis orders probe into letter Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on Wednesday ordered a probe after this letter surfaced. “Had they (police) taken prompt action, Shraddha would have been alive today,” he said (Clockwise from top left) Accused Keshav, his mother, grandma, father and sister | PTI Cousin threatened When police took Keshav into custody, he threatened Kuldeep of dire consequences. “Once I’m out of jail, you will be next.” 43-year jail for raping minor Mysuru: A POCSO court has sentenced a man to 43 years rigorous imprisonment and fined him Rs 50,000 for raping a 10-year-old girl. The incident took place on October 13. The court also directed the Legal Service Authority to pay Rs 7 lakh to the victim. P7
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