Indian media: Support for suspended civil servant

The wall of a mosque which was demolished by authorities on 27 July
Image caption Ms Nagpal has been suspended over the demolition of an under-construction mosque wall in northern India's Gautam Buddh Nagar

Media in India are raising questions over the suspension of a female civil servant in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh, with one leading newspaper running a public campaign to support her fight.

The state government suspended Durga Shakti Nagpal on 27 July, saying she approved the demolition of a mosque wall in Gautam Buddh Nagar district "without following the due process", reports say.

But the decision has not gone down well with some of her senior colleagues and the media, who feel the officer was suspended for taking a tough stand against the local sand mining mafia.

"Despite a nationwide outcry over her suspension, the state government on Sunday hardened its stand and served her a charge-sheet," says The Times of India in a public appeal to support the suspended officer.

The suspension has also took a political turn with Congress chief Sonia Gandhi's support for Ms Nagpal on Friday, leaving the regional Samajwadi Party-led government in Uttar Pradesh fuming and declaring that it may not vote in favour of a crucial food security bill in the parliament.

"The union government has made the right noises but given that the UPA (Congress-led United Progressive Alliance) government in Delhi depends on the Samajwadi Party's support, can it really go against the state government? Perhaps it can with your support," says the paper.

The Hindustan Times says "the state government may be hell-bent on 'punishing' Ms Nagpal for 'demolishing' the wall of an under-construction mosque but that lie is being repeatedly nailed".

The Asian Age, in an editorial, calls the state government's decision "regrettable".

Meanwhile, the emotional story of a medical student's gangrape which triggered a wave of protests across India in December, made its presence felt at the Edinburgh arts festival this weekend, reports The Times of India.

Acclaimed South African theatre director and playwright Yael Farber's production 'Nirbhaya' brought to the world the story of the 23-year-old woman who died after being raped and murdered inside a moving bus in Delhi, the paper adds.

Facebook arrest

In sports news, former India captain Rahul Dravid has criticised cricket administrators for their poor handling of the spot-fixing allegations in the Indian Premier League (IPL) tournament, saying credibility is more important than personal interest, website reports.

Dravid's comments came on the same day the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) moved the Supreme Court against a lower court's order, which had termed the board's internal inquiry into the spot-fixing allegations "illegal", reports the NDTV website.

Meanwhile, a deaf-mute wrestler from Delhi has shown that disability cannot come in the way of courage and achievement, reports The Times of India.

Virender Singh, nicknamed Goonga Pehelwan (mute wrestler) has done the nation proud by winning the sole gold medal for India at the Deaflympics held in Sofia, Bulgaria on Saturday.

And finally, a thief was arrested after he sent a Facebook friend request to a Mumbai-based couple he had robbed of cash and jewellery in April, The Pioneer reports.

Police inspector Ramesh More said an "overconfident" 33-year-old Subhobrata Sanyal, who worked as a domestic help at the couple's residence, was traced after he sent a message through the social-networking website, the paper says.

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