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HindustanTimes Wed,16 Apr 2014

MLA files case against Pappu Kalani for using national emblem on his letterhead

Kiran Sonawane, Hindustan Times  Mumbai, January 09, 2013
First Published: 02:25 IST(9/1/2013) | Last Updated: 02:26 IST(9/1/2013)

Controversial former MLA Pappu Kalani has run into trouble once again, this time for printing a national emblem on a personal letterhead and using it for communications with various government and private companies.

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The Ulhasnagar police station has filed an offence against Kalani for violating the State Emblem of India (Prohibitition of improper use) Act 2005, following a complaint by BJP MLA Kumar Aillani.

"After Aillani filed the complaint, we forwarded it to our legal department. Based on their opinion, we have registered the offence against him under the Act," said Siddharth Wagh, an inspector from the Ulhasnagar police station.

Aillani said, "A few days ago, people pointed out the Ashok Stambh printed on Kalani's letterhead. At first, I thought, being a former MLA, he would have sought permission to use it." Aillani discussed the issue with advocates, discovered it was illegal and wrote to police commissioner KP Raghuvanshi who directed his officers to file a complaint.

Only those authorised by law can use a national emblem on their cars, letterheads, clothes and so on, and failure to do so amounts to an insult to the emblem.

"The police have registered a non-cognisable offence, but I think the police and the government are backing Kalani. So, I have decided to file a writ petition in the Bombay high court and raise the issue in a state assembly session."

A seemingly unaware Kalani said, "I do not know of any case having been registered against me. I am a law abiding citizen. I used the emblem on the letterhead as a sign of national pride, but if it is illegal, I will not use it."

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