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Thursday, March 04, 2021

Daily Briefing: Day after Red Fort violence, police file 25 FIRs; SC rejects Tandav plea for relief from arrest

From the aftermath of yesterday's violence in the National Capital, to the SC revoking the Bombay HC's controversial order acquitting a man of sexual assault; here are today's top stories.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi |
Updated: January 28, 2021 8:29:35 am
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Good morning, 

The Big Story 

The Delhi Police booked 30 of the 40 farm union leaders who were involved in talks with the Centre, a day after hundreds of protesters forced their way into the Capital and stormed the Red Fort on Republic Day. One of the 25 FIRs registered in connection with the violence also names Punjabi film actor Deep Sidhu and gangster-turned-politician Lakhbir Singh Sidhana.

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Gangster-turned-social activist Lakhbir Singh Sidhana aka Lakha Sidhana, who is being blamed for instigating the protesters leading to violence on Republic Day, has more than 25 criminal cases registered against him in Punjab. Here’s a brief profile of the man who is not new to controversies.

From the Front Page

Punjabi film actor Deep Sidhu, who has been named in the Delhi Police FIR on the Red Fort incident, has also come in the cross-hairs of Opposition leaders, who shared photographs of Sidhu with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah. In the days running up to the violence, we look at his Facebook posts which include references to Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale and 1984 riots. 

The march to Parliament House on Budget day has been called off by farmer unions as they come to terms with the violence on Republic Day. Two organisations also withdrew from the protest at the borders of Delhi. However, farmers are adamant that the protests against farm laws would continue and “there will be public meetings and hunger strikes across the country on January 30.”

The Supreme Court declined to grant interim protection from arrest to the makers of the Amazon web series Tandav, who are facing charges of hurting religious sentiments, but agreed to consider their plea for clubbing of FIRs registered in different states.

Must Read

A day after hundreds of farmers stormed the Red Fort, Union Minister of Culture and Tourism Prahlad Singh Patel visited the Fort with the Delhi Police to assess the damage. CCTV cameras, metal detectors, glass windows and security equipment at the entrance, lay ransacked and smashed. Even a tableaux parked there after Republic Day was targeted. 

“We did observe restraint because they are farmers, but they didn’t,” said Inspector P C Yadav. Yadav, who received 12 stitches on his head, was among the 394 police personnel injured in the violence that broke out in the National Capital on Tuesday. Others, too, recall how they were outnumbered by protesters carrying swords, lathis, glass bottles and chains.

The Supreme Court has stayed Bombay High Court’s controversial order acquitting a man of sexual assault under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act on the ground that groping a child over her clothes without direct “skin to skin” physical contact does not constitute the offence under the Act. 

Hundreds of motorbikes lined up in the national capital on Tuesday as part of a rally to raise awareness about the Ram Mandir fund collection drive. It had been organised by the Mayur Vihar unit of the Vishva Hindu Parishad and the Bajrang Dal. We take you inside the rally, and introduce you to the people behind it. 


With the Union Budget just five days away, domestic stock markets on Wednesday witnessed heavy selling pressure, sending the benchmark Sensex plunging by 938 points to 47,409.93 and the NSE Nifty Index by 271 points to 13,967.50. With this, the Sensex has fallen 2,600 points after it hit the 50,000 mark last week.

The body of a 27-year-old protester who died during Tuesday’s anti-farm law agitation in Delhi was brought to his home in Rampur district on Wednesday morning, and cremated later in the day.

Four years after she was convicted in a disproportionate assets case, former AIADMK leader and a close aide of ex-Tamil Nadu chief minister late J Jayalalithaa, V K Sasikala, was freed from the Parappana Agrahara prison in Bengaluru. 

A security guard at Odisha’s Nuapada District Headquarters Hospital died Tuesday, three days after being administered the Covid-19 vaccine, with the Health Ministry maintaining that his death was unrelated to the inoculation.

And Finally…

Meet Tanveer Sangha, the Indian-origin 19-year-old who was included in the Australia squad for the T20I series in New Zealand next month, on the back of a prolific maiden Big Bash season. His success is the ultimate vindication for his father, Joga,  who migrated to Sydney in 1997 from a small village near Jalandhar. 

Delhi Confidential: As the West Bengal Assembly elections near, political parties have resorted to name calling to attack each other. The BJP’s main target has been the TMC’s Abhishek Banerjee, Mamata’s nephew and seen as next in line in the party. Former TMC leader who recently joined the saffron party has called Abhishek “babushona”, usually a term of endearment for a young child.

In today’s episode of 3 Things, we look at how the violence at Red Fort will change the ongoing farmers’ protests, and why the government — which has the upper hand in negotiations with farmers — is being careful in the statements it makes. 

Until tomorrow,

Leela Prasad G and Rahel Philipose

Express Cartoon by EP Unny.

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