Citizens' Issues
Kejriwal removes Social Welfare Minister Sandeep Kumar over objectionable CD
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Wednesday removed his Social Welfare Minister Sandeep Kumar, saying he had received an "objectionable" CD on him and there cannot be any compromise with propriety in public life.
 
"Received 'objectionable' CD of minister Sandeep Kumar. AAP stands for propriety in public life that can't be compromised. Removing him from Cabinet with immediate effect," Kejriwal tweeted.
 
Soon after the action against the legislator over the alleged sex tape, Delhi's Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia said the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government has "zero tolerance" towards any such act and action was taken within half-an-hour of receiving the CD.
 
The BJP and Congress mounted an attack on the Kejriwal government over the purported "sex CD" involving Kumar. The BJP said it will stage a protest outside Kejriwal's residence on Thursday over the issue. 
 
Sisodia told reporters that AAP was a party of principles. "We have zero tolerance against any kind of corruption, crime or any such activity," he said. 
 
"The CM received an objectionable CD of Sandeep Kumar and within half an hour, the decision to remove the minister was taken and Kumar was sacked," Sisodia said.
 
Kumar is the third minister who has been removed or forced out of the cabinet by Kejriwal since the formation of the government in February 2015. 
 
Jitender Tomar was asked to resign as Law Minister in June 2015 after he was accused of forging his college degree. In October last year, Asim Ahmed Khan was removed as Minister for Food and Environment following allegations of taking bribe from a builder.
 
There are six ministers in Delhi cabinet who hold multiple portfolios. Kumar, 36, MLA from Sultanpur Majra, also held the Women and Child Development portfolio.
 
Sisodia said his party and the government always took swift decisions whenever cases against its ministers or leaders surfaced.
 
"Earlier we had removed one of our ministers on corruption charges. Recently we removed party's Punjab convenor over charges that he took money. And today we have removed Kumar after we got the objectionable CD," Sisodia said. 
 
He warned all his party MLAs and leaders saying, "If any of the 67 MLAs or the party leaders be it Arvind Kejriwal, Manish Sisodia or anyone else is caught in activities which are against the party principles, he will not be spared," Sisodia said. 
 
Former AAP leader and eminent lawyer Prashant Bhushan took potshots at Kejriwal over Kumar's removal. "Wah AK (Arvind Kejriwal) Saheb, you appoint degree forgers, bribe takers as ministers and then take credit for removing them when caught," he tweeted. 
 
Delhi Congress chief Ajay Maken asked why the AAP leadership had not expelled the MLAs who had been removed as ministers. 
 
"3 of 6 Ministers in AAP Govt caught for: 1.FakeDegree 2.Corruption 3MoralTurpitude. But who chose them? Why aren't they expelled from Party?," he tweeted. 
 
BJP leader Vijender Gupta said: "When they (AAP) got elected, they said we had 67 gems. Now they stand exposed." 
 
Another BJP leader Sudhanshu Mittal said that there were allegations involving Kumar and "if Kejriwal did not know about them earlier, he should resign."
 
Delhi Commission for Women chief Swati Maliwal said that "acts" of Sandeep Kumar were "shocking" and "unfortunate." 
 
"Such people don't deserve to be minister, let alone WCD minister! Good govt has sacked him," she tweeted. 
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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Gujarat lawyer apologises for alleging two HC judges close to Modi, Amit Shah
The Supreme Court on Wednesday dropped contempt proceedings against senior lawyer of Gujarat High Court Yatin Narendra Oza after he tendered an "unconditional apology" for calling two high court judges close to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP president Amit Shah.
 
Accepting Oza's unconditional apology, a bench of Justice Dipak Misra and Justice C. Nagappan said that the contempt proceedings before the Gujarat High Court stands dropped.
 
Tendering unqualified apology, Oza, in a fresh affidavit, said that except in the proceedings before court, he would not speak on the issue in public.
 
Contempt proceedings were initiated against Oza before the high court after he in a letter to the Chief Justice of India, he had said that Justice M.R.Shah and Justice K.S. Jhaveri owned their allegiance not to the Constitution of the country but same was "mortgaged" at the residences of Prime Minister Modi and BJP President Amit Shah.
 
Senior counsel Kapil Sibal, appearing for Oza, told the bench that the lawyer has tendered unqualified apology and in the light of it the matter should be put to rest.
 
Senior counsel K.K.Venugopal appearing for Gujarat High Court Advocate Association told the bench that bar association has reservation about what is happening. "If everything comes out it is not good for judiciary," he said, telling the bench that the feeling of the bar can't be disregarded, since, after all, it is also a member of the judicial family.
 
Senior counsel Harin Rawal, appearing for complainant Khemchand Rajaram Koshti, told the bench that Oza had, on an earlier occasion too, tendered a similar kind of apology but betrayed it and again spoke on the issue.
 
Doubting the sincerity of Oza in really putting a lid on the issue raked by him, Rawal wondered if apology was a tool to get out of contempt.
 
Seeking to put the issue at rest, senior counsel Venugopal said: "It is a wound that is being turned again and again. This should be closed and let there be peace and harmony."
 
Another senior counsel Abhishek Manu Singhvi said that Koshti wants to keep the pot boiling, and described him more loyal than the king.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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Why we need a digital heir after death
As most of us spend a considerable amount of time on various digital platforms -- Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Instagram, WhatsApp and the like -- a pertinent question now arises: What happens to our digital possessions once we die?
 
All those unforgettable personal photos, family videos and friendly posts acquired over a period of time will either be deleted or kept "frozen" unless we have a digital heir who can preserve those precious moments and gift those to future generations in an external hard disk or pen drive.
 
While several social media platforms, including search engine Google, allow us to safeguard digital memories in some form or the other, there is no such thing as transferring such assets to someone when it comes to cyber law, including in India.
 
According to legal experts, when someone dies leaving behind his email and social media accounts, these become movable property and any heir of the deceased can seek the right to access them.
 
"The said heirs can ask the digital/social media companies to get access after giving the necessary proof. Invariably, the service provider may not be inclined to give such access without any requisite order from the court of competent jurisdiction. This could mean getting a succession certificate from a court of competent jurisdiction which could be a time-consuming process," explained Pavan Duggal, one of the nation's top cyber law experts.
 
According to Duggal, also a Supreme Court advocate, Indian cyber law has not even touched upon -- let alone dwelt on the nuances of -- the issue of one's post-death digital life. 
 
"Complicating the entire matter is that the Indian cyber law is not applicable to wills or testaments. This has created huge confusion. The ground reality is that people have stopped waiting for the law to change. Instead, they have come up with their own digital wills which provide various methodologies for devolving their digital assets and information to their heirs after their death," Duggal told IANS.
 
Digital data comes within the ambit of movable property and hence the appropriate succession certificate needs to be applied for in the Indian context. 
 
"It is pertinent to note that India does not have a dedicated law on digital inheritance which is, indeed, unfortunate, given the rapid adoption of and reliance on digital data by young Indians," Duggal lamented.
 
The social media giants, however, have formulated their own solutions to the problem.
 
Facebook will "memorialise" your account and allow you to choose a "legacy contact". No one can log into a "memorialised" account.
 
The "legacy contact" can "manage" your account by adding a pinned post (like a funeral announcement), respond to new friend requests and change the profile picture and cover photo -- but nothing beyond that.
 
Google, which owns Gmail, YouTube and Picasa web albums, has an "Inactive Account Manager" feature which allows a user to nominate who has access to his or her information. If people don't log on after a while, their accounts can be deleted or shared with a designated person.
 
According to Twitter, "In the event of the death of a Twitter user, we can work with a person authorised to act on behalf of the estate or with a verified immediate family member of the deceased to have an account deactivated." The micro-blogging site, however, added: "We are unable to provide account access to anyone regardless of his or her relationship to the deceased."
 
From the security point of view, one has to safeguard digital impressions in case of death so that they are not used for anti-social purposes.
 
"Digital signatures/impressions generally have a validity/expiry date which require a yearly renewal and they are also equipped with a unique combination of passkey so even if someone has the digital signatures they must know the access key to use that," noted Lucknow-based social media analyst Anoop Mishra.
 
According to statistician Hachem Sadikki from the University of Massachusetts, Facebook will become the world's biggest virtual graveyard by the end of this century as there will be more profiles of dead people than of living users. "Facebook, which currently has 1.71 billion users worldwide, will turn into the world's biggest virtual graveyard by 2098," Sadikki claimed.
 
In such a scenario, preparing a digital will where you appoint a legal heir to take over your digital life is the need of the hour.
 
The law, however, is silent on this not just in India but abroad too. Several US states have been debating the question of whether families can access someone else's digital assets after they die.
 
"The law has to instrinsically recognise that digital data and information, as also aspects pertaining to digital life, are integral components of our life and the law must provide for seamless inheritance of digital data," stressed Duggal.
 
This becomes all the more significant as we have become huge data generators, data publishers and data broadcasters in our lifetimes.
 
"All eyes are on the governments, including in India; they must come up with requisite legal frameworks to provide for seamless and efficient digital inheritance for the people," Duggal asserted.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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