Now No Arrests for Admin.. WhatsApp admin not at risk

Now No Arrests for Admin.. WhatsApp admin not at risk

No arrests under Sec 66-A for social media posts, rules SC

The Supreme Court struck down Section 66-A of the Information Technology Act, 2000, on Tuesday. 

Pronouncing their verdict on a PIL filed against the section in a packed courtroom, which empowers the police to arrest a person for allegedly posting ‘offensive materials' on social networking sites, a Bench of Justices J Chelameswar and RF Nariman said the section violated the fundamental right to freedom of speech and expression and was therefore was illegal.

Terming liberty of thought and expression as "cardinal", the Bench said: “The public's right to know is directly affected by Section 66-A of the Information Technology Act."

"Section 66-A of the IT Act is struck down in its entirety," said the apex court bench of Justice J. Chelameswar and Justice Rohinton Fali Nariman. 

"Our Constitution provides for liberty of thought, expression and belief. In a democracy, these values have to be provided within constitutional scheme," said Justice Nariman, pronouncing the verdict.

"There is no nexus between public order and discussion or causing annoyance by dissemination of information. Curbs under Section 66A of the IT Act infringes on the public right to know." 

Calling the written word of the provision, which comprises terms such as ‘"annoying", "inconvenient" and "grossly offensive", vague, the apex court said: “What may be offensive to a person, may not be offensive to others".

The assurance given by one government was not binding on its successor, the Bench said. "Governments come and go but Section 66-A will remain forever," the bench said.

The SC, however, refused to strike down two other provisions of the IT Act that provide blocking of websites.

EPFO suspends services through CSC; says no data leakage

EPFO suspends services through CSC; says no data leakage

New Delhi: Services pertaining to Aadhaar-seeding with PF accounts done by Common Service Centre (CSC) have been suspended “pending vulnerability checks”, retirement fund body EPFO said today but maintained that there was no data leakage. The statement from the EPFO came amid reports of a letter purportedly written by EPFO Central Provident Fund Commissioner V P Joy to CSC’s CEO, Dinesh Tyagi on March 23 flagging the data theft issue.

While announcing the suspension of CSC services, the EPFO said, “Warnings regarding vulnerabilities in data or software is a routine administrative process based on which the services which were rendered through the CSC have been discontinued from March 22, 2018.”

The EPFO said there is nothing to be concerned about and that all necessary measures are being taken to ensure that no data leakage takes place. “No confirmed data leakage has been established or observed so far. As part of the data security and protection, the EPFO has taken advance action by closing the server and host service through the CSC pending vulnerability checks,” it said in a statement.

The retirement fund body’s statement came after reports had suggested theft of data of subscribers by hackers from ‘’, a website operated by the CSC that comes under the Ministry of Electronics and IT. The issue of data theft was purportedly raised by Joy in his letter dated March 23.”It has been intimated that the data has been stolen by hackers by exploiting the vulnerabilities prevailing in the website ( of EPFO…,” the purported letter had said.

The retirement fund body has been seeding Aadhaar with Universal Account (PF) numbers of its subscribers to improve delivery of services. It has planned to go paperless by August this year and then all its services would be provided online. Separately, Aadhaar-issuing body, Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) clarified that there is no data compromise from its servers, and asserted that the Aadhaar database “remains safe and secure”.

Asked about EPFO’s chief’s letter to CSC CEO, a top IT ministry official said that since vulnerability has been flagged, the ministry would take action to plug the gaps in case they exist. “We will have it looked at. A vulnerability has been pointed out, and so we will (undertake) the exercise to plug the vulnerability, if it is there,” said the official who did not wish to be named.

When contacted by PTI, CSC CEO Dinesh Tyagi emphasised that while the said application had been designed by the CSC, it is now hosted on EPFO data centres and servers. “It is now fully under EPFO’s control… the (web) application has also been security audited by an empanelled auditor. But since the vulnerability has been pointed out, we are getting it audited by another auditor, and will send the report to the EPFO,” Tyagi said.

The report of the data leak and alleged data vulnerability comes at a time when a Constitutional bench of the Supreme Court is hearing a clutch of petitions challenging the Aadhaar Act and the use of biometric identifier in various government and non-government services.

Uttar Pradesh Crime: Shocking! Groom shot dead during wedding ceremony

Uttar Pradesh Crime: Shocking! Groom shot dead during wedding ceremony

n a bizarre incident happening in the crime capital of India i.e. Uttar Pradesh, an incident came to light from Uttar Pradesh’s district Lakhimpur Kheri when a groom was shot dead during his wedding ceremony.

Yes, a groom died during the celebratory firing by his close friend. The whole shocking incident was captured and video also went viral over the Internet. In the viral video, the groom named as Sunil Verma, 25-year-old is seen holding his chest all of sudden, before he could realise what has happened to him, he fell down and died on the spot. Because of the loud music playing in the background during the function no one could hear the gunfire voice and were not able to understand what happened to him, reported Catchnews.

Watch the horrific video:

6 devotees killed, 25 injured in separate road incidents in Himachal Pradesh

6 devotees killed, 25 injured in separate road incidents in Himachal Pradesh

Shimla: Six devotees, including four women, were killed while 25 others were injured in two road accidents in Himachal Pradesh today. Six persons, including four women, were killed and 10 others injured when the vehicle carrying them fell into a gorge near Neherian village in Una district.

The group of 16 devotees from Batala tehsil in Gurdaspur district of Punjab had come to pay obeisance at the Dera Vadbhag Singh gurdwara, near Una, and the accident took place while they were returning, the police said. Eyewitnesses said the vehicle was overloaded and the accident occurred as the driver lost control of it while avoiding a head-on collision with a truck.

The officers of the district administration rushed to the spot and extracted the bodies with the help of fire brigade personnel. The injured were rushed to a hospital. Una district police chief Diwakar Sharma said the bodies of the deceased were sent to the zonal hospital for post-mortem, while the injured were admitted to the hospital.

He added that a case was lodged and a probe was on to ascertain the cause of the accident. In another incident, 15 devotees, including 14 women, were injured — eight of them seriously — when the vehicle in which they had taken a lift veered off the road near Jamal village in the Sarkaghat area of Mandi district.

The injured persons were returning after taking part in a religious ceremony at Chhir village, the police said, adding that they were rushed to the civil hospital in an ambulance. Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Chandrapal Singh said all the injured persons were out of danger. Governor Acharya Devvrat and Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur expressed shock and grief over the death of the six devotees.

Uttar Pradesh: Dalit man forced to drink urine for refusing to harvest crops

Uttar Pradesh: Dalit man forced to drink urine for refusing to harvest crops

Badaun (Uttar Pradesh): A Dalit was allegedly assaulted and forced to drink urine by a group of men in Uttar Pradesh’s Badaun district. According to reports, the incident took taken place on April 23 when the victim denied to harvest their crops.

The man further alleged that a group of men also tied him to a tree and pulled his mustache. The victim has lodged a complaint. After the complaint, Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Ashok Kumar said, “a case has been registered and probe is underway.” This is not the first time such incidents against Dalits have been reported. Earlier, a Dalit man was allegedly beaten up and forced off a horse by a group of villagers during his wedding procession in Rajasthan’s Bhilwara district. The incident took place in Bhilwara’s Govardhanpura village on April 29. A case has been registered under SC/ST Act and seven people have been arrested so far in this regard.

Manesar land scam: Bhupinder Singh Hooda granted bail

Manesar land scam: Bhupinder Singh Hooda granted bail

Panchkula (Haryana): The Panchkula Special Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) court on Tuesday granted bail to former Haryana chief minister and Congress leader Bhupinder Singh Hooda in connection with Manesar land scam. Hooda, who failed to turn up for previous hearing claimed that he was facing health issues. The court has also asked Hooda to furnish a bail bond of Rs. five lakh each.

On May 15, 2017, the CBI had questioned Hooda over alleged financial irregularities in the acquisition of the land. The case pertains to the alleged purchase of land from farmers in Gurgaon for Rs 100 crore when the actual worth (according to market rate) was Rs 1,500 crore. The purchase, according to the CBI, was made during August 2004-August 2007, under the “threat and false apprehension of acquisition of the land by the Bhupinder Singh Hooda-led Congress government in Haryana”.

Uttar Pradesh: 9 people were killed in a tragic road accident

Uttar Pradesh: 9 people were killed in a tragic road accident

Lucknow: Nine persons were killed on Saturday in Uttar Pradesh when their vehicle travelling at high speed rammed into a truck parked on the roadside in Lakhimpur Kheri, police said.

Nine of the 17 people in the mini van were killed instantaneously. The injured were rushed to a hospital, where the condition of three is said to be critical. The accident on national highway-24 apparently took place as the driver had dozed off at the wheel around 6 a.m., a police officer said.

Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has condoled the loss of lives. He ordered the district administration to ensure proper treatment to the injured, a government spokesman told IANS.

Delhi: DJ shot at for not playing songs on demand, 5 arrested

Delhi: DJ shot at for not playing songs on demand, 5 arrested

New Delhi: The Delhi Police on Friday arrested five people for allegedly shooting at a disc jockey for refusing to play songs of their choice at a wedding here. Additional Deputy Commissioner of Police Santosh Kumar Meena said in a statement that a police team apprehended Ravi (23), Sachin(19) and Joginder (27), Deepak (29) and his mother after raids at multiple locations in the city.

The woman was arrested for allegedly destroying evidence. According to a complaint filed by DJ Bobby Singh, Ravi shot at him after he refused to play songs of his choice. Singh claimed that Deepak and Ravi took him to a nearby hospital and told doctors that the injury was caused by a screw.  The police said they had recovered two country made pistols from the accused.

Tripura CM Biplab Kumar Deb apologises for remark on Diana Hayden

Tripura CM Biplab Kumar Deb apologises for remark on Diana Hayden

Agartala: Tripura Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb on Friday regretted his remarks questioning the crowning of Diana Hayden as “Miss World” in 1997 and alleging that international beauty contests were a farce.

“I was talking about how the handlooms of the state could be marketed well. If anybody is hurt or feeling defamed, I regret for this… I respect all women as my mother,” he told reporters. Deb, who had kicked up a storm by his “Internet in the Mahabharata era” remark, landed himself in a fresh controversy when he questioned the rationale behind Hayden’s win 21 years ago.  He had said he failed to understand the “process of judgement” of the crowning of the Miss World contest in 1997, in which Hayden won the award.

Deb, however, was all praise for Aishwarya Rai, who won the Miss World crown in 1994, saying she “represents the Indian women in the true sense”. His remarks drew criticism from various quarters, including beauty pageant contestants, social workers and his political opponents. Panchali Bhattacharjee, social worker and wife of former Tripura chief minister Manik Sarkar, said Deb’s comments were “unexpected”.

Tripura CM Biplab Kumar Deb strikes fresh controversy, questions Diana Hayden’s Miss World crowning in 1997
“Beauty pageant winners work very hard. It is not right to demean them in any way. Besides, we do not see women in any stereotypical manner. They should have the freedom to  express themselves as Laxmi, Saraswati or otherwise,” she added. Femina Miss India contestant from Tripura Mamita Debbarma said, “It is a shame that our chief minister is making such comments.”

Asserting that beauty pageant contestants had to work very hard to win a crown, she said, “The governments of other states felicitate and promote those who win these accolades. This comment is very unfortunate.”   State Congress vice president and social worker Basana Debnath said, “Diana Hayden is an Indian woman and I think our chief minister’s comment has no value. It is uncalled for and does not suit a politician.

“In our country, a three-year girl is raped, but there is hardly any voice against it. I ask, why would people like Asaram and Ram Rahim not be hanged? Nobody is vocal about this. I want a comment from our chief minister.” Fulan Bhattacharya, social worker and Mayor in Council of the Agartala Municipal Corporation (AMC), run by the CPI(M), was also critical of Deb’s comments. “This is none of his business. I am completely against stereotyping Indian beauty as goddess Laxmi and Saraswati. This is an old and retrogressive thought process, like that of a fundamentalist. The rest of the country is laughing at our chief minister’s comment and we are also ashamed,” she said.

State Congress vice-president Tapas Dey said, “His (Deb’s) comments are divisive. He tried to differentiate between Aishwarya Rai and Diana Hayden with a clear motive, but both of them were judged by those who, according to Deb, are international mafia.” Speaking at a design workshop yesterday, Deb had further alleged that beauty pageant organisers were the international marketing mafia, who spotted a huge market in India. His comments came days after Prime Minister Narendra Modi cautioned the BJP leaders to steer clear of controversies and not offer “masala” to the media by making irresponsible statements. Earlier this month, Deb, an arts graduate, had claimed that Internet and satellite communication existed in the days of Mahabharata, which had drawn criticism from Twitterati, intellectuals and his political adversaries.

Odisha: 5-year-old girl raped by two minor boys inside school building

Odisha: 5-year-old girl raped by two minor boys inside school building

Jagatsinghpur (Odisha): A five-year-old girl has been allegedly raped by two minor boys in Jagatsinghpur district, police said. The girl had been allegedly raped by the two boys inside a school building at Kantaballabhapur on Thursday, the police said.

The boys, aged around 10 and 14 years and known to the victim, allegedly lured the girl, a student of class I, with soft drinks and took her to the school where she was sexually assaulted by them, Inspector In-Charge of Jagatsinghpur police station Rajanikant Mishra said. The school was vacant due to the ongoing summer vacation. The matter came to light after a complaint was lodged by the girl’s mother, they said.

The two boys were taken into custody on Friday. The victim and the boys were sent for medical examination to the District Headquarters Hospital here. Necessary action will be taken after getting the report, he said. The statement of the girl was also recorded. This case comes close on the heels of a similar incident in Sambalpur district on April 24 when another five-year-old girl was allegedly raped by a minor boy, police said.

Earlier on April 19, a 14-year-old tribal girl was allegedly raped after being forced to consume alcohol by an auto-rickshaw driver in Thakurmunda area of Mayurbhanj district. Similar cases of minors’ rape were reported earlier in the state – one in Kalahandi and three in Balasore district. The rising incidents of rape of minor girls had triggered public outcry in the state and the proceedings of the state Assembly were stalled on this time several times recently.