India's Supreme Court puts controversial sedition law on hold

Supreme Court puts controversial sedition law on hold

India's Supreme Court has put a controversial colonial-era sedition law, which critics say is used to stifle dissent, on hold.

The judges on Wednesday asked the government to refrain from registering any new cases which invoked sedition until it was done with hearing petitions challenging it.

The court also asked the authorities to pause all existing sedition trials.

Faulty battery cells, modules likely caused e-scooter fires

Faulty battery cells and modules have been identified as the leading cause of electric scooters catching fire in India in recent weeks, according to the findings of an initial investigation by the Central government.

The probe looked into fire incidents involving three companies, including Ola Electric, which is backed by Japan's SoftBank Group and was the country's top-selling e-scooter maker in April.

India sells record 1.4 million tonnes of wheat in April

India exported a record 1.4 million tonnes of wheat in April, the first month of the fiscal year, providing some relief to grain markets as buyers scramble for alternatives to Black Sea supplies that have been hit hard by the Ukraine war.

India, the world's second-biggest wheat producer, exported a record 7 million tonnes of the grain in fiscal 2021-22. It exported just 242,857 tonnes of wheat in April 2021.

Former Haryana chief minister, 87, clears Class 10 and 12 exams

Former Haryana Chief Minister Om Prakash Chautala has cleared his Class 10 and 12 exams at the age of 87.

He received his mark sheets from the Haryana examinations board in Chandigarh on Tuesday.

Last year, Mr Chautala had appeared for the Class 12 exams but his result was withheld because he had not yet passed a Class 10 English exam.

Uttar Pradesh police chief removed for 'neglecting duties'

Uttar Pradesh police chief Mukul Goel on Wednesday was removed from his post for allegedly neglecting his duties and not taking interest in departmental work.

Mr Goel, who assumed the charge as the UP Director-General of Police (DGP) in June 2021, will now be posted as DG, Civil Defence.

Dead photojournalist wins second Pulitzer

Among the Pulitzer Prize 2022 winners in Journalism, Books, Drama and Music announced on Monday is Reuters photographer Danish Siddiqui, who was posthumously awarded a Pulitzer for his images of Covid-19's toll in India.

The Indian photojournalist was killed last year while covering a clash between Afghan special forces and Taliban insurgents in Afghanistan.

Anger after India airline removes disabled teenager

India's aviation minister said he was investigating a domestic airline after it allegedly refused to let a disabled teenager board its flight.

The airline's staff told the teenager's parents that he was a risk to other passengers. The incident sparked widespread outrage with many calling out the airline for discriminatory behaviour.

IndiGo has denied the allegations, saying it prides itself on being an inclusive organisation.

Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia on Monday promised "appropriate action", saying he would personally investigate the incident.

Jharkhand mining secretary arrested in money laundering case

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Wednesday arrested Jharkhand Mining Secretary Pooja Singhal in a case of money laundering.

The case involved the alleged diversion of Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) funds during her tenure as deputy commissioner in Khunti in 2009-2010.

Ms Singhal was produced before a special court, which sent her to ED custody for five days.

Xiaomi accuses Indian agency of 'physical violence' threats

Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi has alleged its top executives faced threats of "physical violence" and coercion during questioning by India's financial crime fighting agency.

Officials from the Enforcement Directorate (ED) warned the company's former India managing director Manu Kumar Jain, chief financial officer Sameer B.S. Rao and their families of "dire consequences" if they did not submit statements as desired by the agency, Xiaomi's court filing dated May 4 stated.

The ED said Xiaomi's allegations were "untrue and baseless" and company executives had deposed "voluntarily".

Climber dies on Himalayan peak

Indian climber Narayanan Iyer, 52, died in Nepal near the summit (at an altitude of 8,200 metres) of the world's third-highest peak Kanchenjunga, expedition organisers said last Friday.

"He was slower than others and we had two guides assist him. He was very exhausted, couldn't continue and collapsed," Mr Nivesh Karki of expedition company Pioneer Adventure told AFP.

Woman dies from cardiac arrest on way to Everest base camp

A 52-year-old woman doctor from Mumbai died while trekking to the base camp of Mount Everest in Nepal, a family member said on Sunday.

"Dr Pradnya Samant, a resident of Goregaon area, died of cardiac arrest. There was no accident," he said.

US-returned Chennai couple murdered by domestic help

A couple in Chennai, who returned from the United States on May 8, were murdered the very next day by their domestic helper.

Police said chartered accountant Srikanth, 60, and his wife Anuradha, 55, were killed at their residence in Mylapore and their bodies buried at their farmhouse on the city's East Coast Road.

Domestic helper Lal Krishna, who committed the crime along with his friend P. Ravi, was later arrested from Ongole in Andhra Pradesh.

The police recovered Rs5 crore worth of jewellery, which belonged to the couple, from the pair.

Santoor maestro Shivkumar Sharma dies

Indian classical music legend Shiv Kumar Sharma died on Tuesday at the age of 84 after suffering a heart attack at his residence in Mumbai.

He is credited with converting the santoor, which was mainly played in Kashmir, into a major instrument of Indian classical music.

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