Indian media: Laloo Yadav conviction welcomed

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  • Tuesday, October 1, 2013
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  • Source: BBC News
    Laloo Prasad Yadav supports the Congress-led federal government

    Media are describing former federal minister Laloo Prasad Yadav's conviction in a long-running corruption case as a victory in India's fight against corruption.

    On Monday, a court found him guilty of corruption and criminal conspiracy in a notorious case known as the "fodder scam", which first came to light in 1996.
    Yadav, who later became federal railways minister, has always denied the charge.
    His family members say he will appeal against the order.
    The Times of India says the verdict "must be welcomed as a sign that Indian politics could get cleaner in the days to come... It is a long-overdue sign that an otherwise excruciatingly slow Indian judicial system is also capable of taking action against politicians accustomed to immunity".
    "A very strong point has been driven home which the public at large, fed up with corruption, will appreciate. The law may take its time in catching up with you, howsoever powerful you are, but catch up at some point of time it will," says the Hindustan Times.
    Hindi newspaper Amar Ujala sees the verdict as a triumph for judiciary and adds that this case will break the common perception that politicians are beyond punishment.
    Meanwhile, reports say Yadav's political future looks "uncertain" because a recent executive order protecting convicted MPs and legislators from a Supreme Court ban on holding office is likely to be withdrawn.
    The CNN-IBN website says Yadav may "lose his Lok Sabha (lower house of parliament) seat and is likely to be eclipsed from the political landscape".
    The Times of India, in another article, says the judgement has "far-reaching political consequences" and is a "career-debilitating" move for Yadav.
    Meanwhile, pilgrims will be allowed to visit the flood-hit Kedarnath shrine in the northern state of Uttarakhand from Saturday, the Zee News website reports.
    Prayers at the Kedarnath shrine, which was badly damaged in the devastating floods in June, resumed on 11 September but so far pilgrims were not allowed due to the bad condition of roads in the state, it adds.
    Road safety
    In Delhi, police are planning to send traffic offenders to correctional centres in a bid to make the capital city's roads safer, The Times of India reports.
    According to the new plan, those breaking traffic rules could be sent on a 15-day course to learn "human behaviour while on road" and watch films related to "road safety", it says.
    The Delhi police have also decided to buy high-speed sports bikes in an attempt to catch up with criminals who use motorbikes, the Hindustan Times reports.
    "This bike can be driven at 150kmph (93 mph) and also has a better pick-up. It will reform the police's image and make offenders fear the law," the paper quotes a senior police officer as saying.
    Moving on to sports news, the Supreme Court has temporarily banned N Srinivasan from taking charge as the chief of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) despite being re-elected for the post on Sunday, reports say.
    The court is hearing a petition seeking a ban on Mr Srinivasan's involvement in cricket administration.
    Mr Srinivasan had "stepped aside" from his post in June after his son-in-law and Chennai Super Kings team official Gurunath Meiyappan was arrested over allegations of betting in the Indian Premiere League (IPL) tournament.
    Mr Meiyappan denies the allegations and has been released on bail.
    And finally, Oxford University, along with the Indian government, has set up an education centre named after former prime minister Indira Gandhi.
    "India's long and historic educational links with Oxford University will be substantially strengthened with the establishment of the Indira Gandhi Centre for Sustainable Development in Somerville College," The Hindureports.


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