The states of the nation: news, headlines, gossip, rumours, things we learnt
The hunt for the mythical ‘Sanjeevani booti’ will initially cost Rs 25 crore, says the Uttarakhand Ayush minister. With help from the Centre, Rs 150 crore could be pumped into the Himalayan search. It is said the herb can revive the dead. It has worked once so far—it revived Rama’s brother Lakshmana in the Ramayana. The question is, whether an outlay for bringing in Hanuman and moving mountains will render the fiscal deficit comatose.
The prosecutor was allegedly asked to go soft. The NIA went on to drop all charges, questioning damning depositions and letting witnesses turn hostile—quite the opposite of how similar cases of Muslim suspects are probed. But she is 2009 Malegaon blasts accused Sadhvi Pragya. The court, though, ruled there was a prima facie case and rejected Sadhvi’s bail plea.
The practice of police constables and army jawans doing domestic chores as orderlies has often been questioned in the past. The sight of policemen cooking, chopping vegetables, baby-sitting, gardening, walking dogs and washing clothes is commonplace at the homes of police officers. Following the recent threat of a strike by policemen, Karnataka has announced an end to the colonial practice, but the officers need not be disappointed. The state will create class ‘D’ posts to replace the orderlies.
She wrote all she had to say about the medieval saint-poet in just three words: “Tulsidas ji, pranam.” She said she no longer remembered what she had prepared for the Class 12 exams she topped as three months had gone by. Wonder what made the school examination board panel taking the ‘re-test’ so sure that she had done something wrong, and what made the police arrest her. She initially refused to cover her face, though, making a police constable recall, “Her confidence struck us the most.”
Chef Ritu Dalmia, restaurateur Aman Nath, dancer Navtej Singh Johar, journalist Sunil Mehra and businesswoman Ayesha Kapur feel their “contributions to India” haven’t brought them “the most basic...of fundamental rights”. On June 30, an SC bench refused to hear their plea against the Raj-era Section 377. Now, CJI T.S. Thakur will decide if it will be clubbed with the other petitions filed after the court upheld the law in 2013. Instead of seeking protection as sexual minorities, they are asserting that Article 21 gets violated if any citizen fears her consensual relationships “may invite coercive state action” due to a “busybody, rival, political party or any third party...motivated only by malice/prejudice”.
Senior citizens from 10 states collected Rs 7 each, a day’s old age pension contributed by the Centre, and sent Rs 1,063 to the Prime Minister’s Office with a covering letter pointing out politely that Rs 7 no longer gets them even a cup of tea. They duly received an acknowledgment saying that the prime minister deeply appreciated their generous donation to the PM’s relief fund. The message was clearly lost on the babus.
“Wanted cleaners; upper castes, including Brahmins, Patels, Pathans, Parsis and Muslims, will be given first preference.” Did the Ahmedabad NGO that put up this notice imagine RSS bhakts would see red and ransack its office? It paid the price for ‘caste-free’ thinking with an apology for hurting ‘religious sentiments’.