THIRUVANANTHAPURAM l tuesday l January 31, 2023 l `9.00 l PAGES 16 l late city EDITION 61 killed in Taliban suicide bomb attack in pak mosque The blast during afternoon prayers in the high-security zone in Peshawar left over 150 people, most of them policemen, injured It’s a revenge attack, says Pak taliban Outfit known for targeting forces The blast occurred inside the mosque around 1.40 pm when the bomber, who was present in the front row, blew himself up. Sarbakaf Mohmand, a commander of Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), or Pakistani Taliban, claimed responsibility for the attack on Twitter. He said the bombing was part of a revenge attack for his brother, who was killed last August in Afghanistan ■ ■ TTP has carried out a number of suicide attacks in the past, targeting security personnel. In 2014, it stormed the Army Public School in Peshawar, killing 150 people, including 131 students The outfit had threatened to carry out a series of attacks after ending its ceasefire with the Shehbaz Sharif govt last year | P9 400 Estimated No. of policemen in the mosque when the blast took place 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 Cash-for-verdict scam: Bar Council initiates proceedings against Saiby P R a m d a s @Kochi Congress leader Rahul Gandhi (second-left) with CPI’s D Raja (from left), National Conference’s Omar Abdullah, Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge, PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti and others, during a public rally at the end of his 145-day Bharat Jodo Yatra amid heavy snowfall, in Srinagar on Monday | PTI Aimed to save liberal, secular ethos: Rahul Call to end J&K violence as yatra concludes hul said while the BJP has shown a path of politics, the Congress leader Rahul Gan- Congress wants to show the dhi on Monday said the aim of country a different route — of his 4,000-km-long Bharat Jodo dignity love and affection. “Na, Yatra was to save the liberal frat ke bazaar mein mohabbat and secular ethos of India. ki dukan kholne ki koshish ki Addressing a rally here to hai (attempted to open a shop mark the end of the yatra, he of love in a market of hatred.” Rahul said he was warned called for the end of violence in the Valley, saying phone calls that if he walked in Kashmir, he announcing deaths of loved could be attacked. “However, I walked for four days. I ones — whether of a thought those who hate soldier, a CRPF jawan ‘End these o r a ny K a s h m i r i , phone calls’ me, let me give them an opportunity to change should stop. “No child, mother, son or any oth- Rahul said, “I can the colour of my white er family member understand the t-shirt to red...Kashshould take this phone pain of Kashmiris miri people did not as I have seen give me a hand grenade call. My aim is to stop the violence.” He but gave me love and this call,” he said. Striking a bond with recalled when he warmth,” he said. was informed The rally was meant Kashmiris, he said they gave him hearts about the killing t o b e a s h ow o f of his grandma strength for the Oppofull of love and not hand grenades, adding (Indira) and dad sition, but many lead(Rajiv) over ers could not make it no BJP leader can walk like he did, as phone, adding he due to adverse weathwanted to end er and most locals they are scared. such calls chose to stay indoors. “I have not done this Apart from the Conyatra for Congress but for the country. Our aim is to gress leaders, Farooq and Omar stand against the ideology that Abdullah of National Conferwants to destroy the founda- ence, Mehbooba Mufti of PDP, tions of this country We should D Raja of CPI, RSP’s Premchan. stand united with love and af- dran, and leaders from DMK, , fection against them,” Rahul JMM, BSP VCK and IUML par. said. Amid heavy snowfall, Ra- ticipated in the rally Faya z Wa n i @ Srinagar express read EC defers Dweep bypoll notification 1 hurt in explosion at cracker unit Kochi: The Election Commission (EC) has deferred the notification for holding a byelection in Lakshadweep on Monday after considering the Kerala High Court order suspending the conviction of MP Mohammed Faizal in an attempt-to-murder case. P5 Thrissur: A person was seriously injured when a firecracker unit in Kundannur near Chelakkara in Thrissur district exploded on Monday evening. According to nearby residents, the tremors of the massive explosion were felt as far as 5km away from the accident site. P4 Waking up nearly a week after the incident came to light, the Bar Council of Kerala on Monday initiated suo motu proceedings against advocate Saiby Jose Kidangoor, who is facing allegations of taking money from clients after making them believe that it was to bribe High Court judges to obtain favourable verdicts. The Bar Council also issued a notice to Saiby asking for his explanation on the allegations. The decision was taken by the statu- tory body in an urgent meeting in leged that it’s well known that Kochi. Quoting a report submitted Saiby is an agent of judges in HC, by the HC’s vigilance wing, the and is the only lawyer who can inTNIE had reported the incident fluence judges. Many of his advoon Tuesday last. cate friends procured favourable The Bar Council’s move came orders in their cases through him, after the Full Court they alleged. “Lakhs of Kerala High Court of rupees were alpress accepted the findings impact ready snatched from of the vigilance wing the litigants for getand sought a report ting favourable orfrom the state police chief in this ders from the judges,” the comregard. The coucil also considered plaint stated. a letter from the Union Ministry However, the Bar Council deof Law based on complaints filed manded clarity on the identity of P4 by a section of lawyers who al- the complainants. Thrissur man, 62, smokes on flight, arrested Guj court convicts ASARAM IN 2nd RAPE CASE T o b y A n t o n y @ Kochi D i l i p S i n g h K s h atr i ya @ Ahmedabad The Gandhinagar sessions court on Monday convicted self-styled godman Asaram in a rape case filed by a Surat-based woman in 2013. The quantum of sentence is likely to be pronounced on Tuesday . Sessions court judge D K Soni acquitted six other accused, including Asaram’s wife Laxmiben, their daughter, and four disciples who were accused of aiding and abetting the crime, for want of evidence. Asaram’s lawyer said his client will challenge the order in the Gujarat High Court. The complainant, one of Asaram’s former devotees, accused the influential spiritual leader of raping her on several occasions between 1997 and 2006 when she was staying at his ashram at Motera. Special public prosecutor R C Kodekar and public prosecutor Sunil Pandya told the media that they will try to get maximum punishment for the accused. Notably, the complainant’s younger sister had accused Asaram’s son, Narayan Sai, of sexually exploiting her when she was staying in Asaram’s Jahangirpura ashram in Surat between 2002 and 2005. Sai, too, was booked for rape and has been awarded life imprisonment by a Surat court. The 81-year-old godman is currently serving a life sentence in a Jodhpur jail for raping a minor girl at his ashram in Rajasthan in 2013. His two accomplices were sentenced to 20 years in jail by the court in the same case for their roles. adani FPO gets just 4% retail subscription Its public subscription remained muted though Abu Dhabi’s International Holding Company said it has confidence in the group that saw a $70-bn rout in market value in just three days | P10 16 pages, including 4 pages of THIRUVANANTHAPURAM Express Didi calls on Amartya to express solidarity on univ land row, announces Z-plus cover P r o n a b M o n d a l @ Kolkata Two days after Visva Bharati, a Central university, directed Nobel laureate Amartya Sen to return part of a plot where his residence is located in Santiniketan, saying he was occupying it illegally, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee called on him to express solidarity and announced Zplus security cover for him. Mamata and her nephew Abhishek Banerjee are the only other persons in the state with Z-plus security . During her visit to Birbhum on Monday, Mamata met Sen at his residence and also gave him the original records of his land that were in the government’s possession. “People of Bengal are unhappy with the way Nobel laureate has been humiliated. Allegations of land grabbing against him (Sen) are baseless. It is an attempt to malign his reputation. No one has the right to insult him. We won’t tolerate it. I have collected the original records of his land and handed over to him. Z-plus security will be provided for him,’’ said Mamata after the meeting. The letter to Sen issued by Visva Bharati on January 27 said, “You are in possession of 1.38 acre of land which is in excess of your legal entitlement of 1.25 acre. Kindly return the land to Visva Bharati as early as possible since application of the laws of the land will cause embarrassment to you and also t o Vi s va B h a r at i which you endear so much.’’ This was the Visva Bharati’s second letter to Sen asking him to handover the excess leased land in his possession. The chief minister said her government will decide the next course of legal action to protect Sen’s rights once she is back in Kolkata. Timing on the missive curious Visva Bharati’s letter came days after the Nobel laureate’s remark that Mamata has qualities to become the prime minister of the country. Hitting out at the BJP-led Centre, Mamata said, ‘’I want Visva Bharati to run properly instead of attempts at saffronisation.’’ At a time when in-flight misbehaviours by passengers hit the headlines, a 62-year-old man from Thrissur was caught allegedly smoking in the lavatory of a Dubai-Kochi flight. Sukumaran T, a native of Mala, who arrived at the Kochi airport by SpiceJet Airways flight SG-17 on Sunday night, was arrested by the Nedumbassery police on a complaint from the Kochi airport security officer. According to police officials, the staff of the SpiceJet flight noticed smoke emanating from the lavatory while the aircraft was mid-air, and soon intercepted the person. They reported the matter to the airport security officer when the flight landed in Kochi. “It was based on the security officer’s information that we took the person into custody. We have also seized a cigarette lighter from him,” said a police officer. Sukumaran has been booked The staff noticed smoke emanating from the lavatory while the aircraft was mid-air, and soon intercepted the person. They later reported the matter to the airport security officer in Kochi — A police officer under Sections 11A and 5A of the Aircraft Act and Section 118(e) of the Kerala Police Act. He was later released on bail. “Smoking inside the airtight cabin of a flight puts other passengers in danger. It can also trigger fire inside the flight. This illegal act can attract imprisonment for two years and a fine,” the officer said. Biji Eapen, national president of IATA Agents Association of India (IAAI) and MD of Speedwings Aviation Group, said these are isolated incidents reported in Kerala’s avia● More on P4 tion sector.
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31-01-2023 of The New Indian Express-Thiruvananthapuram