Karnataka govt issues directions on loudspeakers - permission required over next 15 days

News Network
May 10, 2022

Bengaluru, May 10: In the wake of the Azaan versus Hanuman Chalisa row in Karnataka, the state government has issued a set of directions on the use of loudspeakers and to remove them if they were not authorised by the 'designated authority.'

The note issued by the state Chief Secretary P Ravi Kumar to the Additional Chief Secretary Jawaid Akhtar said Forest, Ecology and Environment Department also defined the 'designated authority.'

The development comes following a row from Monday morning on this issue with some Hindu groups, mainly Sriram Sena, Bajrang Dal and Hindu Janajagruthi Samithi organising Bhajan-Keertan from pre-dawn to counter Azaan from mosques.

As the row aggravated, Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai held a meeting on Monday, following which the Chief Secretary issued a note to Akhtar. Citing the Supreme Court ruling dated July 18, 2005, and October 28, 2005, regarding the implementation of the Noise Pollution (Regulation and Control) Rules, 2000, the Chief Secretary said loudspeakers or the Public Address System should not be used except after obtaining permission from the designated authority. Rule 5 (2) of the NPRC Rules bars the use of loudspeaker or public address system or any sound-producing instrument at night time except in closed premises, subject to other conditions, the note said.

"All users of loudspeakers or public address system shall obtain written permission from the designated authority within 15 days. Those who don't obtain should voluntarily remove or should be removed by the designated authority," Kumar said in his note.

He also directed that a committee should be formed at different levels to decide on the application of loudspeaker or public address systems. In police commissioner areas, the committee will comprise an assistant commissioner of police, a jurisdictional executive engineer of the city corporation and a representative of the state pollution control board. In other areas, deputy superintendents of police, the jurisdictional Tehsildar and a representative of the state pollution control board.

"This is applicable to all premises which are using loudspeakers and public address system. Necessary government orders or directions shall be issued to all concerned to implement this with IMMEDIATE effect," the note read.

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News Network
June 28,2022

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Mangaluru, June 28: Karnataka Home minister Araga Jnanendra has directed the Dakshina Kannada district police and the Mangaluru city police, to conduct station-level surveys of foreign nationals, who have overstayed their visas, and foreigners who have intruded, and are staying in the district without any valid documents.

He directed that the survey report should be submitted at the earliest. “It will take some time for the police to complete the survey. Recently in Bengaluru, illegal foreigners were arrested, and sent to the detention centre. A few have even obtained ration cards and voters’ identity cards,” he said.

Araga said that the law and order situation under the DK police and Mangaluru city police was satisfactory.

Since the conviction rate is low in DK, and the city police limits, the minister held a meeting with public prosecutors and assistant public prosecutors, to ascertain the reasons for the low percentage of convictions.

“There are issues related to the shortage of staff, and cases coming for trial after two to three years. There are several instances of witnesses turning hostile, and sometimes issues are solved through compromise. In some cases, the conviction rate is 12% to 13 % only,” he said.

“A similar meeting was held in Chikkamagaluru recently, and I have directed the SP and commissioner of police to work in coordination with the public prosecutors,” Araga said.

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News Network
June 28,2022

Udaipur, June 28: A man was beheaded on Tuesday, 28 June, in Udaipur's Maldas street, after he published a social media post allegedly supporting former Bharatiya Janata Party’s suspended spokesperson Nupur Sharma's remarks against the Prophet. An investigation into the crime has been initiated.

Two men, claiming to be the murderers, posted a video message later in the day and sent out a threat to Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

As per the police, the victim, a tailor by profession, was attacked by a sharp-edged weapon. The video of the incident has gone viral on social media, which is being termed as a Taliban-style murder.

The police have reached the spot and further investigation is underway.

Meanwhile, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot has appealed to the people to maintain peace.

"I condemn the heinous murder in Udaipur. Strict action will be taken against all those involved in the crime and the police will go to the bottom of the case. I appeal to all the parties to maintain peace. Strictest punishment will be given to those involved in such a heinous crime," he said.

In the viral video, one of the two accused could be heard saying, "I will make the video viral when I accomplish my goal to teach a lesson to the hate monger." He was also heard threatening PM Modi and Nupur Sharma.

Police sources said that the plot to murder this man was chalked out some 10 days ago.

Meanwhile, the local traders have shut their shops in protest against the brutal murder. A tense atmosphere has prevailed in the region. 

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News Network
June 28,2022

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Believe it or not! The reason for journalist Mohammad Zubair’s sudden arrest is a four year old tweet, wherein he had posted a photo of  a Bollywood comedy film from 1983 directed by the legendary Hrishikesh Mukherjee.

In the evening of Monday, June 27, officers with the Intelligence Fusion and Strategic Operations unit of the Delhi police arrested Zubair, co-founder of the fact-checking website Alt News. He was booked under sections 153 (giving provocation with intent to cause riot) and 295 (deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs) of the Indian Penal Code. 

The Bharatiya Janata Party leaders celebrated the arrest as a victory of truth. BJP general secretary C T Ravi went on to call him a ‘jihadi’ and accused him of inciting violence.

The police sources have confirmed that Zubair’s crime was the tweet dated March 24, 2018. The police also claimed that Zubair’s conduct during the investigation was found “questionable”, warranting his custodial interrogation to “unravel the conspiracy in this matter”.

The Twitter handle of a self proclaimed ‘Hanuman bhakt’, which complained to the police against Zubair, has tweeted only once since its apparent inception in October 2021 – the tweet targeting Zubair, published June 19, 2022.  

Ironically, the image of the hotel signboard in the tweet which prompted Delhi Police to arrest Zubair was also used as the lead image in an article in the Indian Express in March 2018, and has received no particular attention from those religiously outraged. 

In fact, the image is actually a screenshot from the 1983 movie – Kissi Se Na Kehna – duly cleared by the censor board at the time and shown innumerable times on television since then. 

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