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India has 65 million passport holders

By The Assam Tribune

AGARTALA, Jan 2 - India has now around 65 million passport holders, Muktesh Kumar Pardeshi, Ministry of External Affairs joint secretary, said. Pardeshi came here to attend the function of inauguration of Passport Seva Kendra (PSK) in Agartala.

He said that delay in police verification is one of the major factors to issue of passports in time. �The national average of days of police verification of passport applicants is 34 while the process is very bad in NE States ranging between 90 days to 200 days,� the official said. � IANS

Man jailed for raping disabled woman

Imphal, Jan 2 - A 50-year-old man was on Thursday found guilty of raping a disabled woman and sentenced to 10 years of rigorous imprisonment.

Imphal West district and sessions court judge M Manoj Kumar also ordered convict S Naoba to pay a fine of Rs 50,000 or undergo further imprisonment for six months in case he fails to pay the fine.

The government was also directed to pay a compensation of Rs 2 lakh to the family of the then 21-year-old woman, who died in 2013.

The State Women�s Commission was also directed to render assistance to the family.

Ng Tejkumar, director of prosecution, Manipur, said Naoba of Uripok Achom Leikai area in Imphal had raped the woman on August 3, 2006.

Police, however, framed the chargesheet only on Janauary 14, 2013. �This is the longest term of imprisonment for rape after the amendment of Section 376 of the Indian Penal Code,� Tejkumar said.

�A clear message has been given that criminals cannot commit crimes of this heinous nature and escape. It should be a lesson to one and all.�

On Thursday, police had tightened security at the court complex, and no information was released about the accused being presented in court. In the past, women vigilantes turned up in court and manhandled people accused of rape and other sexual crimes. � IANS

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