News that doesn't receive the necessary attention.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Arrest of UN IPCC climate chief Pachauri on sex harassment charges on hold as he checks into hospital for heart condition and urinary tract infection-Indian Express

2/24/15, "RK Pachauri granted protection from arrest till Feb 26," indianexpress.com

"A Delhi court on Monday granted interim protection from arrest till February 26 to TERI director-general R K Pachauri, who is facing allegation of sexual harassment from a woman employee. Pachauri moved the trial court for relief following direction from the Delhi High Court, which had on February 19 given him interim protection till Monday. Senior advocate Sidharth Luthra sought anticipatory bail on health grounds. To which the court asked what kind of illness does Pacuauri have..
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Replying to the court query, the Luthra said, “We have submitted all the medical records regarding his illness which include cardiac issues and UTI (urinary tract infection).

Granting interim protection till February 26, Additional Sessions Judge Raj Kumar Tripathi issued notice to the investigation officer of the case and sought his response on Pachauri’s application. 

“Notice to IO for submission of report on the illness of the applicant (Pachauri).

Verification of the document submitted in regard to the illness of applicant. Put up for next date of hearing on February 26. Accused be not arrested till then,” the court said.

Sources said Pachauri was brought to Fortis Escorts Hospital by family members, including his daughter, and admitted to the cardiology department on Monday morning.

Meanwhile, advocate Prashant Mendiratta argued that the interim protection from arrest should not be given for a long period as the accused was in an influential position and heads the organisation where the complainant is working." via Junk Science
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Pachauri had been headed out of town for a UN IPCC conference until sexual harassment charges required him to stay in India:

2/22/15, "RK Pachauri excuses himself from IPCC meet," Hindustan Times, New Delhi

"Days after a case of sexual harassment was registered against the chairman of Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change RK Pachauri, he has decided not to attend the plenary session of the top scientific body on global warming in Nairobi next week.
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The chairman of the IPCC, Rajendra K. Pachauri, has informed that he will be unable to chair the plenary session of the IPCC in Nairobi next week because of issues demanding his attention in India,” a statement issued by the IPCC press office said. This came after women right activists demanded that Pachauri’s passport should be confiscated as he was planning to leave Nairobi to attend the IPCC plenary session. 
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Former additional solicitor general Indira Jaisingh also demanded that he resign from all government panels and as director general of The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI). 
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“His resignation will not mean that he is guilty. It will ensure fair and equitable treatment to the complainant,” she said. A spokesperson for Pachauri said he was committed to provide all assistance and cooperation to the authorities in their ongoing investigations."

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Politics and crime go hand in hand in India: "There is no bar to the many politicians who continue to execute policy while facing charges that would see them immediately suspended in most other democracies..." Almost one-third of ministers appointed by new India Prime Minister Modi face criminal charges:

9/27/14, "Top India politician Jayalalitha jailed for corruption," BBC

"Analysis: Andrew North, BBC News, Delhi"
 
"Many Indians will applaud the conviction of Tamil Nadu's chief minister - after years of evading justice - in the hope it is another move towards cleaning up the country's notoriously criminalised political system.

India's Supreme Court has tightened the noose, disqualifying from office any MP convicted of a serious crime and ordering fast-track trials to prevent them using their influence to string things out.

But there is no bar to the many politicians who continue to execute policy while facing charges that would see them immediately suspended in most other democracies, until either their innocence or guilt is proven.

New Prime Minister Narendra Modi has promised cleaner government, yet just under one-third of the ministers he appointed face criminal charges, with one even accused of attempted murder.

India's Supreme Court recently ruled that while the constitution allows Mr Modi to do this, he should set a better example on who he appoints."...
 


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Convicted criminals in India are allowed to remain in political office during appeals which can go on indefinitely:
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6/20/13, "Number of criminal MPs in Parliament is embarrassing: Jay Panda," firstpost.com 
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"Besides the massive backlog in our judicial system, our rules also provide special and peculiar privileges to elected representatives who face criminal charges. The most shocking of them is that even after conviction, elected representatives are allowed to continue in office even as the appeals process drags on. But of course, the bigger problem is that cases don’t get to trial in a timely fashion in the first place. My Bill providing for fast track courts to expedite criminal cases against elected representatives within three months, augmented by another Bill which would free up the appointment of prosecutors from political interference, would deal a body blow to the scourge of criminalisation of politics."...(near end of article)


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"Corruption and Criminalization are two distinctive features of the Indian politics." It's common in India for convicted criminals to get a judge to 'suspend' the charges so he can run or remain in office.

10/31/11, "Cleanup Indian Politics Of Criminal MPs," countercurrents.org, Syed Ali Mujtaba


"Corruption and Criminalization are two distinctive features of the Indian politics. The crusade against corruption was loudly articulated by the social activist Anna Hazare however, there is little noise being made by the civil society about the criminalization of Indian politics.



As a matter of fact, one out of four MP in India face criminal charges. There are 162 MPs in the current Lok Sabha, the lower house of the Parliament that has criminal records. Out of these, there are 76 MPs having serious charges against them.



The total number of criminal cases against the MPs is 522 and out of these 275 MPs face serious IPC sections charges against them. The Bhartiya Janta Party has the highest number of criminal MPs that is 43, out of which 19 have serious criminal cases against them....



We have Members of Parliament who are being indicted by the judiciary for various acts including accepting cash for exercising their vote in Parliament." CAG concludes....



Obviously, there is an urgent need of electoral reforms in this country that bars any convicted person from holding office till they are finally acquitted by a court of law. The current legal position relating to a person convicted of criminal charges is that if the criminal charge, and not just the sentence, is suspended on an appeal, he has the right to contest elections.



One has to understand the nuance in the law and that depends on what order the court gives. If the conviction is suspended, then one can fight elections, if the sentence is suspended, which means no jail, but conviction stands, until such time that the appeal is heard, then one can not fight elections....



In fact, there is already a law in place to rein in the corrupt MPs, but many of them have found loopholes into it and have got stay order on their conviction to contest election.
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Even the proposed amendment bill is being challenged by some unscrupulous MPs. They have threatened to derail the new bill, if and when, it comes for discussion at the all party meeting.

It’s an argument by those who have something to hide and they will use all kinds of tactics to continue their domination in power....
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The redemption of Indian politics from all its banes is long haul and cleaning Indian politics of criminal MPs could be a way forward for good governance and betterment of the country."...





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