Daily Bulletin: Karnataka coalition govt to face trust vote today, Ayodhya mediation panel to submit report; day's top stories

FP Staff
Here are today's top stories: Karnataka Assembly to vote on fate of HD Kumaraswamy government today, Punjab, Haryana HC to hear plea in Kathua rape case, and more

Karnataka Assembly to witness trust vote on Congress-JD(S) govt today

The Congress-JDS government in Karnataka is hanging by a thread ahead of the floor test on Thursday with the rebel MLAs refusing to yield after the Supreme Court's ruling in their favour.

As the coalition with truncated strength struggled to shore up its numbers, the Supreme Court's bench headed by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi,  on Wednesday ruled that the 15 rebel Congress-JD(S) MLAs "ought not to be compelled" to participate in the proceedings of the ongoing session of the state Assembly.

The court verdict was interpreted in political circles as a relief for the rebel lawmakers, as it categorically said that an option should be given to them as to whether they wanted to take part or stay out of the Assembly proceedings.

The ruling coalition had held out the threat of using the Whip against the wayward MLAs, citing the disqualification provision under the anti-defection law. Armed with the court order, the rebel Congress-JD(S) MLAs camping in Mumbai said there was no question of stepping back on their resignations or attending the session.

The apex court was hearing the plea of the MLAs seeking a direction to the Speaker to accept their resignations from the Assembly. Karnataka Assembly Speaker KR Ramesh Kumar welcomed the Supreme Court decision, giving him the freedom to decide on the resignations of rebel MLAs, and said he would conduct himself responsibly in accordance with the principles of the Constitution.

However, in a relief to the HD Kumaraswamy-led government, one of the rebel MLAs, Congress' Ramalinga Reddy on Wednesday said he had decided to withdraw his resignation from the Assembly and will vote in favour of the trust vote to be sought by the chief minister.

"I will take part in the Assembly session and vote in favour of the party. I will continue to remain in the party and serve as MLA, he was quoted by PTI as saying.

Ayodhya mediation panel to submit report to SC today

A report on the "progress on mediation" by the panel appointed to find a resolution for the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid land dispute case in Ayodhya, is likely to be submitted to the Supreme Court on Thursday.

A five-judge Constitution bench, headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, had on 11 July sought a report on the issue and said that a day-to-day hearing may commence from 25 July if the court decides to conclude the mediation proceedings.

The bench had requested former apex court judge Justice (Retd) FMI Kalifulla, chairperson of the three-member mediation panel, to apprise it by 18 July the progress of mediation till date and its present stage.

"It will be convenient to have the said report latest by 18 July, on which date further orders will be passed by this court," the bench, also comprising justices SA Bobde, DY Chandrachud, Ashok Bhushan and SA Nazeer, had said on 11 July.

It passed the order while hearing an application filed by a legal heir of one of the original litigants, Gopal Singh Visharad, seeking a judicial decision on the dispute and conclusion of the mediation process, alleging that "nothing much was happening" in the mediation process prescribed by the court.

The bench had also said that the court would pass appropriate orders on 18 July after perusing the report filed by the mediation committee.

Punjab, Haryana HC to hear plea in Kathua rape and murder case today

The Punjab and Haryana High Court will Thursday hear the plea of the father of the girl who was raped and murdered in Jammu and Kashmir's Kathua last year, seeking enhancement of the sentence pronounced by a trial court and challenging the acquittal of one of the accused.

In his petition filed on 10 July, the eight-year-old girl's father had sought enhancement of punishment for the six men convicted in the case that triggered nationwide outrage. The girl's father had pleaded that the sentence pronounced on three of the convicts should be increased from life imprisonment to capital punishment.

The three others should be awarded life imprisonment instead of the five year's jail term awarded by the sessions court, the appeal said. He has also challenged the acquittal of Vishal Jangotra, another accused in the case.

Last month, a Pathankot court awarded life imprisonment to Sanji Ram, the mastermind and caretaker of the small village temple where the crime took place in January last year. Deepak Khajuria, a special police officer, and Parvesh Kumar were also awarded the same sentence for the gang trap and murder of the girl from a nomadic tribe.

They were convicted under sections of the Ranbir Penal Code (RPC), including those related to murder, gang rape, kidnapping, destruction of evidence and conspiracy.

ICJ orders Pakistan to review death sentence for Kulbhushan Jadhav

The International Court of Justice (ICJ) on Wednesday ordered Pakistan to make an "effective review and reconsideration" of the conviction and death sentence of Indian national Kulbhushan Jadhav and also grant consular access, in a verdict that was hailed in India as a "big victory" for the country.

In a reprieve for Jadhav, 49, a retired Indian Navy officer sentenced to death by a Pakistani military court on charges of "espionage and terrorism" after a closed trial in April 2017, a 16-member bench by a 15-1 vote continued the stay on the execution and held that Islamabad violated New Delhi's rights to consular visits after his arrest.

The bench, however, rejected some remedies sought by India, including annulment of the military court's decision convicting Jadhav, his release and safe passage to India. Prime Minister Narendra Modi welcomed the verdict,

Care Ratings CEO Rajesh Mokashi sent on leave

Care Ratings on Wednesday said the company's board of directors has decided to send Rajesh Mokashi, Managing Director & CEO of CARE, on leave, with immediate effect, until further notice.

After Icra's Naresh Takkar, Mokashi is the second rating agency head who has been sent on 'leave' after an anonymous complaint to SEBI, the market regulator, alleged that there were lapses in its rating mechanism. Several rating agencies had given high ratings to IL&FS when the ground reality of the company was different.

"The board of directors of CARE Ratings Limited has at its meeting today decided, pending the completion of the examination of anonymous complaint received by SEBI to place Rajesh Mokashi, Managing Director & CEO of CARE, on leave, with immediate effect, until further notice," the statement said.

The company said the board of directors of CARE has decided to appoint T.N. Arun Kumar, currently Executive Director (Ratings), as Interim Chief Executive Officer of the company.

Google shuts down Chinese search engine project

The software giant's controversial 'Project Dragonfly' search engine has been closed. Google's VP of public policy Karan Bhatia told the US Senate Judiciary Committee in a hearing that the company had terminated the project of building a censored version of its search engine for China. The company doesn't have any plans of launching Search in China for now.

Salman to launch Mahesh Manjrekar's daughter in Dabangg 3

Actor-filmmaker Mahesh Manjrekar has confirmed that superstar Salman Khan will be launching his daughter Saiee with the upcoming film, Dabangg 3. "Yes. It is true, he is launching my daughter Saiee in Dabangg 3," Manjrekar told PTI. Saiee will be playing Salman's love interest in Dabangg 3, which is said to be a prequel.

Also See: BS Yeddyurappa plays cricket with BJP legislators as Karnataka coalition govt struggles to stay afloat

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