Ludhiana Gas Leak Incident

Ludhiana Gas Leak Incident: Death Toll Rises To 11

The death toll in the gas leakage incident that occured in Giaspura in Ludhiana district on Sunday has risen to 11.

‘A total of 11 persons are dead. There are five females and six males including 2 male children of 10 years and 13 years,” the official said.
The two deceased at SPS Hospital have been identified as Naveent Kumar (39) and Neetu Devi (39), they said.

Earlier, Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann expressed deep sorrow and anguish at the gas leakage.

“The incident of a gas leak in the factory in the Giaspura area of Ludhiana is very sad. Police, government and NDRF teams are present at the spot. All possible help is being extended to the affected. Rest details soon,” Punjab CM Mann tweeted.

NDRF teams have been rushed to the factory and a team of doctors and a fire brigade also reached the spot.

“Definitely, it is a gas leak case. The NDRF team is present at the spot to evacuate the people and will conduct the rescue operation. 9 people died in this incident and 11 are sick,” said Swati, SDM Ludhiana West.

“Exact reason will only come when we will go to the incident spot. We are waiting for the NDRF, they are specialized in this,” another officer said.

Further investigation is underway. (ANI)

Read More:

Criminal Case Against Sukhbir Singh Badal

SC Quashes Criminal Case Against Sukhbir Singh Badal

In a relief to Sukhbir Singh Badal, the Supreme Court on Friday quashed Punjab’s Hoshiarpur Court order summoning him (Sukhbir Singh Badal), Parkash Singh Badal and others in the alleged case of forgery and cheating filed against them, in the controversy over the dual constitution of Shiromani Akali Dal.

“We quash and set the impugned order including trial court summons,” the top court said.
The court allowed the appeal filed by Sukhbir Singh Badal, Parkash Singh Badal and Daljit Singh Cheema, challenging the proceedings pending before Punjab’s Hoshiarpur Court in the alleged case of forgery and cheating filed against them, in the controversy over the dual constitution of Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD).

A bench headed by Justice MR Shah has earlier kept its order reserved after hearing the submission of all the parties connected to the matter.

Prakash Singh Badal, Sukhbir Singh Badal and Daljeet Singh Cheema have filed a plea in SC in a matter relating to the complaint filed by Hoshiarpur resident Balwant Singh Khera.

Balwant Singh Khera had filed a criminal complaint before the Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate back in 2009 against the three.

According to the said complaint, SAD was accused of submitting two different constitutions, that is, one with the Gurdwara Election Commission (GEC) and the second with the Election Commission of India (ECI) to seek recognition as a political party.

The criminal complaint was premised on the allegation that the party has claimed to be a secular party and given a declaration to abide by the principles of secularism in its constitution filed before ECI while it contests elections for a religious body, Shiromani Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee, thereby being a religious party.

KV Vishwanathan, Senior Advocate appeared for Prakash Singh Badal. RS Cheema, Senior advocate appeared for Sukhbir Singh Badal. Sandeep Kapur, Advocate appeared for Daljit Singh Cheema. Advocates Prashant Bhushan and Indira Unninayar appeared for Balwant Singh Khera.

It was argued before the court that being religious does not run contrary to the principles of secularism and merely because a political outfit is contesting elections to a Gurdwara committee does not mean that it is not secular.

It was argued that the criminal case with allegations of forgery and cheating over the constitution of the party filed before ECI and GEC, therefore, had no basis.

The petitions were filed by Karanjawala and Co. Advocates and the brief was led by Nandini Gore and Sandeep Kapur, Senior Partners along with Virinder Pal Singh Sandhu, Aditi Bhatt, Tarannum Cheema, Tahira Karanjawala, Niharika Karanjawala, Arjun Sharma, Apoorva Pandey, Gudipati G Kashyap, Principal Associates, Sanya Dua, Yash Dubey, Rose Verma, Associates. (ANI)

Read More:

Amritpal in dibrugarh jail

Amritpal Kept In Dibrugarh Jail’s Isolation Cell

Central intelligence agencies will interrogate ‘Waris Punjab De’ chief Amritpal Singh, who was arrested by the Punjab Police on Sunday and later sent to Assam’s Dibrugarh jail.

The self-styled preacher was evading Punjab Police since March 18. Nine of Amritpal’s aides who were arrested earlier were also lodged in Dibrugarh jail.
“Amritpal has been kept in a separate cell, distant from his accomplices who are also in same jail after they were arrested during Punjab Police crackdown,” a senior official told ANI.

The official added that a team of Intelligence Bureau (IB), Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) and other Central Intelligence agencies would reach Dibrugarh jail to question Amritpal.

“He will be questioned on his association with his sympathisers and his source of funding. Because intelligence agencies have got a lot of inputs regarding his association with handlers in Pakistan and other countries,” the official said.

“We have asked Assam Police to beef up security around jail premises and visitors to the jail to be thoroughly frisked and their details to be kept in record. Apart from state police, Central Armed Police Force (CAPF) is also deployed in the periphery of jail premises,” he added.

A special chartered flight from Bathinda Airport accompanied by a team of Punjab police took off at 8.25 am and reached the Dibrugarh Airport at 2.20 pm. They were received by senior Assam Police officers at the airport and he was immediately taken to Dibrugarh Jail where he was kept in a cell after a medical examination.

Earlier on Sunday, Amritpal was arrested from a Gurudwara in the Moga district of Punjab and reportedly also addressed a gathering before his arrest.

According to the officials, the arrest was done by combined efforts of the Punjab Police and Central intelligence agencies. (ANI)

Read More:

Amritpal moga

Amritpal Arrested From Moga

In a major breakthrough amid the continuing manhunt, ‘Waris Punjab De’ chief Amritpal Singh was arrested by Punjab Police from the Moga district of Punjab, informed sources.

Earlier on Saturday, Union Home Minister Amit Shah when asked about Amritpal Singh’s arrest and that he has been absconding for a long, said, “It may happen sometime. Earlier he used to roam freely, but now he cannot carry on with his activities.”
Two more aides of the fugitive radical preacher and Khalistan leader Amritpal Singh were arrested at Mohali in Punjab, in a joint operation by Punjab and Delhi Police on April 18.

On April 15, Punjab Police arrested his close aide Joga Singh from Sirhind in the Fatehgarh Sahib district.

Another close aid of the pro khalistani leader, Papalpreet Singh was arrested on April 10, in an operation conducted by Punjab Police and its counter-intelligence unit.

The radical leader had been declared a “fugitive” while he was on a run earlier in March.

“Waris Punjab De’ chief Amritpal Singh has been declared a fugitive. His two cars were seized and gunmen nabbed. We also checked if the firearms of his security escorts had been procured legally. A case has been registered. Punjab Police have launched a manhunt for Amritpal Singh and we are hopeful that he will be arrested soon. A total of 78 people have been arrested so far and further searches and raids are underway,” Chahal said in an exclusive interview with ANI.

Almost a month ago the Punjab police issued a lookout circular (LOC) and non-bailable warrant (NBW) against ‘Waris Punjab De’ chief.

Amritpal has been on the run since March 18, the day Punjab Police launched a massive manhunt for him.

The crackdown came almost over three weeks after Amritpal’s supporters stormed Ajnala police station in Amritsar on February 23, demanding the release of one of his aides, Lovepreet Toofan. (ANI)

Read More:

Sidhu on Punjab Mortgaged

AAP Has Mortgaged Punjab: Sidhu

Senior Congress leader Navjot Singh Sidhu on Saturday lashed out at Aam Aadmi Party and said that AAP has mortgaged Punjab.

The election commission has scheduled the Jalandhar Lok Sabha bye-election on May 10, and counting will be done on May 12.
Sidhu addressed a press conference with Congress candidates Karamjit Kaur and Mohinder Singh Kaypee.

At the conference, Sidhu showed a video of Aam Aadmi Party convenor Arvind Kejriwal at the gathering in which AAP leader Kejriwal is talking about the promises he made to the people of Punjab.

After showing the video, Sidhu said, “AAP has mortgaged Punjab. In today’s time, people are feeling cheated. The Congress party had earlier said that all these people who are promising amenities free of cost, from where will the money come? Kejriwal said that people will come back to Punjab from abroad but their own children are outside.”

Hitting out at AAP leaders, Sidhu said, “Earlier there were fewer drugs in Punjab, now after the coming of this (AAP) party, Punjab has become a sea of drugs. They have taken out a procession of the people of Punjab.

“We have seen in the rally held in Jalandhar that all the chairs were empty. With the coming of AAP, the sand trolley which was worth 3700 rupees is now being sold for 25-25,000,” he added.

Highlighting Kejriwal’s promise of saying that there won’t be any ‘dharna’ in the state after AAP comes into power, Sidhu said, “AAP leader Kejriwal had said that after our government comes, there will be no ‘dharna’. But till now people everywhere are sitting on dharna for their demands.”

On the issue of electricity, Sindhu said, “Electricity will be provided round-the-clock in Punjab. Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL) has taken a loan of 2300 crores after his government came.”

The Congress party on Wednesday announced the list of its 40-star campaigners for the by-elections in the Jalandhar Lok Sabha seat. (ANI)

Read More:

Amit Shah

No Khalistani Wave In Punjab: Amit Shah Praises State Govt

Even as the hunt to nab absconding Khalistan sympathiser Amritpal Singh continues, Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Saturday said that there is no Khalistan wave in Punjab and the Centre is keeping a close watch on the situation.

The Home Minister pointed out that the Punjab government had done good work and that the Centre had cooperated.
“There is no wave (of Khalistan). Many times, some people try, but the governments have done their job. The Punjab government has done a good job, the Centre has supported. We are monitoring the situation closely,” Shah said while speaking at a media conclave in Bengaluru.

Asked about Amritpal Singh’s arrest and that he has been absconding for a long, the Union Minister said, “It may happen some time. Earlier he used to roam freely, but now he cannot carry on with his activities,” he said.

The Union Home Minister also said that the BJP government led by PM Narendra Modi will not tolerate any attack on the Indian High Commissions and that strict action will be taken in accordance with Indian laws.

Amit Shah was referring to the attack on the Indian High Commission in London last month and the consulate in UK and San Francisco.

“We have made the NIA so capable that they can probe if there is any conspiracy against India on foreign soil. Delhi Police registered a case and launched a probe and a report from the Indian High Commission was also received. Based on that, we have handed the probe to the NIA,” the home minister said in the media conclave held in Bengaluru.

On March 19 this year, protesters holding Khalistan banners staged a demonstration outside the High Commission in London. One of the protestors climbed up its balcony and pulled down the Indian national flag of India. The protest was being held to denounce the recent police action in Punjab.

In a video of the incident, which has since gone viral on social media, a protestor is seen on the balcony attempting to bring down the Indian flag. At the end of the video, another man is seen reaching the balcony and wresting the Tricolour back from the Khalistan supporter.

Khalistan supporters also allegedly attacked Indian Consulate in San Francisco (SFO). Videos of supporters breaking the doors and barging into the office surfaced on social media.

Meanwhile, speaking at the media conclave in Bengaluru today, the Home Minister further pointed out that the Popular Front of India is also an important issue in Karnataka which goes to Assembly polls on May 10, and said that people feel secure after the Centre’s clampdown against the now-banned outfit.

“PFI is an important issue as well. Congress kept PFI safe and supported it in Karnataka. The BJP government has put a ban on PFI and clamped against the propagating separatist organisation in South India. If there is one state which will benefit the most, it is Karnataka,” he said.

Asked if people would cast their votes for the BJP on the issue of the PFI ban, the Home Minister said that it is not an issue, the security of the people is.

“PFI might not be the issue, security could be. The way violence was being unleashed under PFI…Our worker Praveen was killed in daylight. The strictness with which we have worked (against PFI), there is definitely an appreciation in the people of Karnataka. They are feeling secure,” he said.

The Union Home Ministry had in September last year declared the Popular Front of India (PFI) and its affiliates an ‘Unlawful Association’

It had said that PFI and its associates or affiliates or fronts have been found to be involved in serious offences, including terrorism and its financing, targeted gruesome killings, disregarding the constitutional set-up of the country, disturbing public order etc. which are prejudicial to the integrity, security and sovereignty of the country.

The Home Ministry said it found it necessary to curb the nefarious activities of the organization. It declared the Popular Front of India (PFI) along with its associates or affiliates or fronts including Rehab India Foundation (RIF), Campus Front of India (CFI), All India Imams Council (AIIC), National Confederation of Human Rights Organization (NCHRO), National Women’s Front, Junior Front, Empower India Foundation and Rehab Foundation, Kerala as “unlawful association” under the provisions of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967. (ANI)

Read More:

Mukhtar Ansari Lawyers

Punjab Won’t Bear Mukhtar Ansari’s Lawyers Bill: CM Mann

Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann on Thursday said that his government has returned the file of the expenses of the lawyers representing gangster-turned-politician Mukhtar Ansari’s case, adding that the government is planning to charge expenses from the minister of the previous government who had ordered him to be kept in the state.

“The UP gangster was kept in Ropar Jail with facilities. He did not appear despite the warrants issued 48 times. Expensive lawyers were hired with expenses of Rs 55 lakh. I returned the file for clearing the expenses from money collected through taxes paid by people. The minister who was responsible for the decision (on Ansari), he will be asked to pay,” Mann said in a tweet.

In the year 2019, Mukhtar Ansari, MLA from Mau, was lodged in Punjab’s Ropar jail where he was named in an extortion case. Ansari did not apply for bail in the FIR registered in Punjab and the police did not file any charge sheet against him.

In multiple cases, several production warrants were issued by Uttar Pradesh Police against Ansari but Punjab Police did not allow him to be shifted to Uttar Pradesh on the grounds of ill health.

Supreme Court in the year 2021 ordered the transfer of mafia don and BSP MLA Mukhtar Ansari from Ropar jail in Punjab to Banda jail in Uttar Pradesh.

Yesterday Uttar Pradesh police declared a bounty of Rs 25,000 on gangster-turned-politician Mukhtar Ansari’s wife, Afsa Ansari.

A reward of Rs 25,000 has been declared on the arrest of Afsa Ansari, wife of Mukhtar Ansari, who is wanted in a case registered under the Gangsters Act at Police Station Dakshin Tola,” Mahesh Singh Attri, Additional Superintendent of Police, Mau said.

Earlier in January this year, the police registered a murder case against Mukhtar Ansari in connection to the 2001 ‘Usri Chatti’ gang war incident. A case under section 302 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) was registered against Ansari at PS Mohammadabad in Ghazipur. (ANI)

Read More:

Pakistani drone Punjab

Pakistan Drone Spotted Near Intl Border In Punjab

Border Security Force personnel intercepted a Pakistani drone near Bhariyal village of Punjab’s Gurdaspur district, officials said on Thursday.

The drone spotted at the Bhariyal village post of the BSF, was observed flying inside Indian territory for five minutes before it was intercepted with illumination bombs.
“The drone kept flying inside the Indian border for 5 minutes, during which 3 rounds of firing were done by BSF, and an Ilu bomb was also fired, after which the drone flew back to Pakistan,” BSF said.

In a similar incident, BSF personnel intercepted a Pakistani drone near the Dhanoe Kalan in the Amritsar district of the State and recovered packets of narcotics, an official statement said on April 16.

The incident took place on April 15 at around 8.22 pm when the BSF troops heard the buzzing sound of the suspected flying object (drone) entering from Pakistan into Indian territory.

Earlier on Thursday, Security forces tracked and shot down a drone after it crossed the Line of Control (LoC) in the Beri Pattan area in Jammu and Kashmir’s Rajouri.

Five loaded AK magazines, some cash, and a sealed packet were recovered from the drone, added the PRO.

BSF is mandated to guard the 3,323 km India-Pakistan International Border.

On March 28, BSF shot down a Pakistani drone in Amritsar soon after it entered Indian territory carrying a consignment of contraband items, the paramilitary force said.

The drone was shot down in the Amritsar when the BSF troops heard the buzzing sound of the flying object. It was recovered the next day morning during a search operation conducted by the border guarding force. The drone entered Indian territory from Pakistan and it was detected in the area of Border Outpost Rajatal in the Amritsar Sector, said the BSF.

Earlier in February, the BSF troops also recovered six big packets of heroin weighing 6.275 kg, contained inside a bag in a wheat field of Toor village in the Amritsar district. (ANI)

Read More:

Randhawa Meets Kharge After Sachin Pilot’s Fast

Congress leader Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa, who is party incharge of Rajasthan, on Wednesday held a meeting with party president Mallikarjun Kharge regarding the issues facing the party in Rajasthan and said the manner in which Sachin Pilot raised the issue of corruption was wrong.

Randhawa said he will prepare a report as to who is at fault and action will be taken.
The meeting came a day after Pilot held a day-long fast calling for action by Ashok Gehlot government against alleged corruption during the previous BJP rule under former chief minister Vasundhara Raje.

Rajasthan will go for polls later this year.

Pilot went ahead with his protest even as the central leadership has said that his fast was “against the party interests and is anti-party activity”.

Randhawa, a former Punjab Deputy Chief Minister, said he had spoken to Pilot.

He said Pilot should have raised the issue in the state assembly.

“I agree with the issue of corruption that Sachin Pilot has raised, but his method is wrong. He should have raised it during the Assembly session… Today (discussion with Sachin Pilot) happened for half an hour and we will talk tomorrow also. I will analyze all things and prepare a report as to who is at fault. The press conference that he did, I did not feel that it was pro-party… I will submit a detailed report,” he said.

Asked about allegations of inaction against loyalists of Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot over not holding Congress Legislative Party meeting despite the presence of central observers in the run-up party’s presidential election, Randhawa said he was not AICC incharge of Rajasthan at that time.

“Action should have been taken in the past but was not done but this time action will be taken,” Randhawa said.

The ruling Congress in Rajasthan is grappling with a fresh crisis in view of Pilot’s fast with the move seen as an accusation against Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot of “sitting on corruption cases”.

The Congress took a serious view of party leader Sachin Pilot’s daylong fast over his demand for “action on corruption” during the BJP government’s rule, saying it is against party interests and an “anti-party activity”.

Randhawa had issued a statement on Monday saying Pilot, a former state Deputy Chief Minister, had never spoken to him on the issue.

“Sachin Pilot’s day-long fast is against the party interests and is anti-party activity. If there is any issue with his own government, it can be discussed in the party forums instead of in the media and public,” Randhawa had said.

“I have been an AICC in-charge for the last five months and Pilot has never discussed this issue with me. I am in touch with him and still appeal for calm dialogue since he is an indisputable asset to the Congress party,” he added.

The fresh crisis has emerged months before the assembly polls in the state due late this year.

Pilot is seen as a chief ministerial aspirant but Gehlot, who did not contest the Congress presidential election, is apparently keen not to hand over the reins of the state to him.

The differences between the two had come out sharply in 2020 with Pilot leading a “rebellion” against Gehlot.

The two leaders have taken potshots at each other on several occasions in the past. (ANI)

Read More:

Akali Dal Leader Atwal BJP

Akali Dal Leader Atwal, Several Others, Join BJP

Prominent Akali Dal leaders Sardar Inder Iqbal Singh Atwal and Sardar Jasjeet Singh Atwal, along with several others from Punjab, joined the Bharatiya Janta party (BJP) in New Delhi on Sunday.

They were formally inducted into the saffron camp in the presence of senior BJP leaders at the party’s national headquarters in the Capital on Sunday.
Further, according to sources in the BJP, AIADMK leader and former Rajya Sabha member, Dr Maitreyan, will also join the saffron party on Sunday.

Earlier, on Saturday, CR Kesavan, the great-grandson of India’s first Indian Governor-General, C Rajagopalachari, joined the BJP.

Kesavan resigned from Congress on February 23, saying that he has not even seen vestiges of the values that made him work for the party with dedication for over two decades.

Kesavan shared his resignation letter to Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge on Twitter saying he could no longer concur with “what the party symbolises, stands for or seeks to propagate”.

His resignation came within a month of the desertion by former Union minister AK Antony’s son, Anil Antony, who parted ways with the party after coming out in support of Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the controversial BBC documentary series.

Anil Antony joined the BJP on April 6, in the presence of Union Ministers Piyush Goyal and V Muraleedharan. Kerala BJP chief K Surendran and senior party leaders Tarun Chugh and Anil Baluni were also present on the occasion.

Earlier on Friday, former Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy, joined the BJP here in the national capital.

Reddy, who served as the last chief minister of undivided Andhra Pradesh, joined the BJP in the presence of Union minister Prahlad Joshi, general secretary Arun Singh and MP K Laxman, at a function organised at the party headquarters.

Reddy became Andhra Pradesh’s chief minister on November 11, 2010, but resigned on March 10, 2014, to protest against the Congress party’s decision to bifurcate the state.

The developments come ahead of the next year’s Lok Sabha elections. (ANI)

Read More: