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Karnataka Congress leader DK Shivakumar’s bail rejected, to continue to remain in Tihar jail

Karnataka Congress leader DK Shivakumar will remain in Tihar jail as court rejected his bail in money laundering case being investigated by Enforcement Directorate.

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DK Shivakumar

Former Karnataka Minister and Congress troubleshooter DK Shivakumar will continue to remain in Tihar jail as the special court at Rouse Avenue rejected his bail in connection with the money laundering case yet again today (Wednesday, Sep 25).

However, given the health concerns raised by his lawyers, the court has issued necessary directions to the authorities concerned.

Shivakumar has been in custody since September 3 after the Enforcement Directorate (ED) had arrested him after four days of interrogation in relation to the case. The ED had cited Shivakumar’s non-cooperation during the questioning as the reason for his arrest.

After the end of the maximum period of police custody, DK Shivakumar was sent to 14-day judicial custody – till October 1 – on September 17.

Till now, Shivakumar’s bail plea on medical grounds has been rejected by the court after the prosecution told the court that the former minister could tamper with evidence if he walks out.

While his police (ED) custody ended on September 19, he was remanded to judicial custody till October 1 by the Rouse Avenue court.

During the course of arguments, the ED argued that the probe under Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002 (PMLA) was operating independently of the offences committed under the IT Act in order to ascertain the source of “tainted” money.

Paying income tax on ‘tainted money’ would not absolve the accused of liability under PMLA, the ED argued.

The ED accused Shivakumar was amassing wealth and property disproportionate to his income on record as an agriculturalist.

Shivakumar’s lawyers countered that investigation under PMLA could not be sustained in the absence of a scheduled offence and mere insertion of Section 120B could not grant jurisdiction to the ED to initiate a probe under the PMLA.

It was further argued that Shivakumar’s income and property, as well the income and property of his family members was a matter of record owing to the affidavits filed by him before the Election Commission for various Assembly elections in Karnataka. Hence, there was no possibility of any wealth or asset bring hidden or unaccounted for.

After hearing the parties at length for more than two days, the CBI court had reserved its order in the bail plea on September 21.

The ED had been probing accusations of money laundering registered against Shivakumar since August 2017, when a cash amount of Rs 8.86 crore was found in his New Delhi residence. The money laundering case is based on a charge sheet filed by the Income-Tax Department last year, alleging tax evasion and “hawala” transactions running into crores.

On September 12, DK Shivakumar’s daughter Aishwarya too had appeared before the ED and was questioned for seven hours in connection with the case. At the time, officials from the ED stated that she was being questioned about a trust fund set up in her name. The ED also interrogated her regarding the increase in her wealth between 2013 and 2018. Shivakumar had declared that his daughter held assets worth Rs 108 crore, ahead of the 2018 state assembly elections. However in 2013, she supposedly had only Rs 1.09 crore.

The ED has also questioned many of Shivakumar’s aides including Karnataka Congress MLA Laxmi Hebbalkar in this case. As part of the probe into the case back in 2017, the Income Tax Department found that some transactions made by him were linked to Lakshmi Hebbalkar. Further, when the raids first took place on August 2, 2017, Shivakumar had allegedly made a phone call to Lakshmi.

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Sonia Gandhi hits out at BJP in his Independence Day wish, says will oppose distortion of history

Sonia Gandhi’s statement comes a day after a row erupted after BJP dropped Jawaharlal Nehru from list of freedom fighters in its Har Ghar Tiranga advertisement in Karnataka.

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SONIA GANDHI

Congress president Sonia Gandhi on Monday took a jibe at the government in her Independence Day wish and said her party will strongly oppose the distortion of history for political gain.

In her message on the occasion of Independence Day, Gandhi said attempts to trivialise the sacrifices of freedom fighters and the glorious achievements made by the country over the last 75 years can never be accepted. The BJP has been trying to malign leaders like Mahatma Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru to further its political propaganda, she said.

Her statement comes a day after a row erupted after BJP dropped Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, the first Prime Minister of independent India, from its Har Ghar Tiranga advertisement in Karnataka.

Read Also: 76th Independence Day: PM Modi says we need to be self-sufficient in energy sector

India has achieved a lot over the last 75 years but what can never be accepted is that the current self-absorbed government is hell-bent on trivialising the great sacrifices made by freedom fighters and the country’s glorious achievements, Gandhi said in her message.

Hitting out at BJP, Gandhi said the Congress will not accept any wrong portrayal of historical facts for political gains nor will it allow any insult to Gandhi-Nehru-Patel-Azad based on falsehoods, she said in her written message.

Wishing the country on the occasion of India’s 76th Independence Day, Gandhi said over the last 75 years, highly talented Indians have led the country on the path of progress in the fields of science, education, health, and information.

Gandhi said India had cemented its image as a glorious nation through its diverse cultures and languages. They also made provisions for a strong democracy and constitutional institutions, she said in her Independence Day message.

Gandhi also said that the visionary leaders of India laid the foundations of a free, fair, and transparent election system.

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Nitish Kumar announces 10 lakh govt jobs, creation of 20 lakh employment on 75th Independence Day

Deputy CM Tejashwi Yadav has repeatedly been cornered on his electoral promise of 10 lakh jobs which he made during the 2020 assembly polls sitting at the opposition cam.

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Nitish Kumar and Tejashwi Yadav

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Monday backed his deputy Tejashwi Yadav’s ambitious promise of providing 10 lakh jobs to the youth of Bihar in his Independence Day speech at Patna’s Gandhi maidan. His government will work hard everywhere to ensure the promise of 10 lakh jobs, Kumar said.

Speaking at the Independence Day celebration event, Kumar said the Rashtriya Janata Dal (JDU) and Janata Dal-United (JDU) alliance government has a concept to provide at least 10 lakh jobs in the government and an additional 10 lakh employment opportunities in various sectors.

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The Bihar CM also said the state government would do so much to create jobs and employment opportunities for the state’s children – in both government and outside. If succeed, his govt wants to take the figure to 20 lakhs, he said.

Expressing happiness over the announcement of 10 lakh government jobs, Kumar’s deputy said it is a historic announcement made by respected Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on the occasion of 76th Independence Day at Gandhi Maidan, Patna.

Deputy CM Tejashwi Yadav has repeatedly been cornered on his electoral promise of 10 lakh jobs which he made during the 2020 assembly polls sitting at the opposition cam.

The young RJD leader had earlier said that his jobs promise had the nod from Chief Minister Nitish Kumar. This massive announcement made by the Bihar CM is the real issue that the media should focus on. The two parties will work together to make it happen, he also said.

Yadav had earlier posted a clip of him answering the question with a shot at the BJP. It is a success that instead of Hindu-Muslim topics, the media is asking the leaders about employment. The people who were sleeping and never asked about jobs, that media is also awake now. Isn’t this a success? he had said.

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Maharashtra new cabinet: Devendra Fadnavis gets Home and Finance in Eknath Shinde’s new cabinet, two Shiv Sena rebels get school education and Agriculture portfolio

Shiv Sena rebels Deepak Kesarkar and Abdul Sattar have been given the ministries of school education and Agriculture.

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Eknath Shinde

Seven weeks after taking an oath, Maharashtra’s newly appointed Chief Minister Eknath Shinde has formed the state’s new cabinet.

In the new cabinet, Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis scored the big ministries of Home and Finance while the BJP minister Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil will be the new Revenue minister.

Eknath Shinde, who expanded his two-member cabinet on Tuesday by inducting 18 ministers, has kept the Urban Development portfolio with himself.

Maharashtra Chief Minister’s Office has informed about the new development.

Shiv Sena rebels Deepak Kesarkar and Abdul Sattar have been given the ministries of school education and Agriculture.

The BJP minister Sudhir Mungantiwar has been made the Forest minister while the former state BJP president Chandrakant Patil will be the new minister for higher and technical education in the new cabinet announced by Eknath Shinde.

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After Shinde’s oath as Maharashtra CM, the NDTV was reported that 25 ministers will be from the BJP while 13 from Eknath Shinde’s Shiv Sena to be inducted into the new cabinet in Maharashtra.

Apart from Shinde and Fadnavis, the majority of the ministers will be new faces in the new cabinet. The BJP wants to test new faces before it preparations for the next assembly elections in Maharashtra, the NDTV was also reported then.

In the last week of June month, a group of Shiv Sena MLAs rebelled during the staged political drama that forced former Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray to step down.

Putting an end to the over a week-long political turmoil in Maharashtra, Eknath Shinde took oath as Maharashtra Chief Minister on June 30 and Devendra Fadnavis as his deputy overthrowing the then CM Uddhav Thackeray.

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