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Mumbai, Jun 24 (PTI) Following are the top stories from the Western Region at 1700 HRS.

BOM7 GJ-COURT-LD RAHUL Defamation case: Rahul Gandhi appears before Guj court, denies charges Surat: Congress leader Rahul Gandhi appeared before a magistrate's court in Surat on Thursday to record his statement in a criminal defamation suit filed by a Gujarat MLA, and denied making any defamatory remarks on people with 'Modi' surname.

BOM9 MH-HC-VACCINATION-FRAUD Over 2,000 people in Mumbai fell victim to fake COVID-19 vaccination drives: Maha to HC Mumbai: More than 2,000 people have fallen victim to fake COVID-19 vaccination camps in Mumbai so far, the Maharashtra government told the Bombay High Court on Thursday.

BOM8 GA-HC-TEJPAL-APPEAL Sexual assault case: HC to hear Goa govt's appeal against Tejpal's acquittal on July 29 Panaji: The Goa bench of the Bombay High Court on Thursday adjourned till July 29 an appeal filed by the Goa government against the acquittal of journalist Tarun Tejpal in a 2013 rape case.

BOM10 MH-HC-PRISONS-VACCINATION Over 13,000 prison inmates vaccinated against COVID-19 in Maha: Govt tells HC Mumbai: More than 13,000 prison inmates in Maharashtra have so far been vaccinated against coronavirus and the number of active COVID-19 cases among them has reduced significantly, the state government told the Bombay High Court on Thursday.

BOM13 MP-BJP MEETING-NADDA Nadda slams Digvijay, Kamal Nath for ‘creating confusion’ among people through their remarks Bhopal: Hitting out at senior Congress leaders Digvijay Singh and Kamal Nath over their recent statements on the abrogation of Article 370 in Jammu and Kashmir and the coronavirus situation, respectively, BJP president J P Nadda on Thursday accused them of creating confusion in the minds of people.

BOM5 MH-OPPOSITION-ALLIANCE-SENA Rahul should join hands with Pawar to bring Oppn parties together: Sena Mumbai: The Shiv Sena on Thursday said Congress leader Rahul Gandhi should join hands with NCP chief Pawar to align all opposition parties together to take on the ruling BJP at the Centre.

BOM11 MH-FADNAVIS-MVA Maha govt lies with confidence: Fadnavis Mumbai: Maharashtra BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis on Thursday accused the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government in the state of lying 'with confidence', and criticized it over issues such as Maratha, OBC reservations, handling of the COVID-19 situation and the Sachin Waze case.

BOM12 MH-NAVI MUMBAI AIRPORT-PROTEST Thousands stage protest demanding naming of Navi Mumbai airport after activist D B Patil Mumbai: Thousands of people from local Agri and fishing communities along with some politicians staged a protest against the City and Industrial Development Corporation (CIDCO) in Navi Mumbai on Thursday to press for their demand to name the upcoming international airport there after late activist D B Patil.

BOM2 CG-ELEPHANT-DEATH Elephant death in Chhattisgarh: 2 forest staffers suspended, 3 officials shunted out Raipur: Two forest department employees were suspended and three officials shifted out of Surajpur in connection with the death of a wild elephant in the Chhattisgarh district, an official said on Thursday.

BES4 MP-VIRUS-DELTA PLUS 5 cases of COVID-19 'Delta Plus' variant in MP; 1 dead Bhopal: Five persons have so far been found infected with the 'Delta Plus' variant of coronavirus in Madhya Pradesh and one of them has died, state Medical Education Minister Vishwas Sarang said on Thursday.

LGB1 MH-HC-WOMAN-RAUT Mumbai top cop seeks more time for report on woman's charges against Raut, her estranged husband Mumbai: Mumbai Police Commissioner on Thursday sought more time from the Bombay High Court to inquire into a 36-year-old woman's allegations of stalking and harassment by certain men at the behest of Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut and her estranged husband.

BES8 MH-DYCM-BJP Maha BJP seeks CBI probe against Ajit Pawar in cases related to Param Bir, Waze Mumbai: Maharashtra BJP president Chandrakant Patil on Thursday demanded a CBI inquiry against state Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar and Transport Minister Anil Parab in connection with cases related to senior IPS officer Param Bir Singh and former policeman Sachin Waze.

BES5 MH-PALGHAR-TREMOR Maha: Mild tremor recorded in Palghar; no casualty Palghar: Palghar district in Maharashtra on Thursday experienced a tremor of 3.7 magnitude, and no casualties were reported, a district official said. PTI RSY RSY

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