Howrah, 14 June : A few days after taking charge as the Railway Minister, Mamata Banerjee on Sunday flagged off a daily train to Digha, the Howrah-Digha Kandari Express.
Banerjee, in her election manifesto, had promised to turn Digha into another Goa, which the state government failed to do in the last 32 years. The day she joined the office as the Railway Minister, she had announced that within a month the Howrah-Digha Express would chug out from Howrah and she fulfilled her promise 12 days before it ends.
Recently the Bangladesh cricket team was in England for the ICC Twenty20 World Championship. Away from home, the players wanted some spicy curry delicacies. The squad ordered chicken jalfrezi and other exotic dishes from Bangladeshi food specialists, Bollywood Spice in Warmley, Gloucestershire some 150 miles away from their hotel in London. The food was prepared in Warmley, and then was taken to Nottingham by a chartered helicopter, News of the World reports.
This whole exercise cost a whopping six thousand pounds, but the players weren’t concerned. "We wanted to enjoy what we get at home," said batsman Shakib Al Hasan, who ordered the food.
CPI(M) leader Anuj Mandal claimed that the victims were party workers and were killed by “goons” of tribal body Peoples’ Committee Against Police Atrocities (PCAPA). He said nine CPI(M) activists were missing after the clashes, which occurred in the Dharampur area over control of political turf.
“We have received information about the killings. We are yet to confirm whether they were CPI(M) workers. About the missing people also, we have received a complaint. But I don’t have any confirmation,” district magistrate N.S. Nigam told Bengal Newz over telephone. However, PCAPA leader Chattradhar Mahato denied the allegations. “They (the CPIM) are levelling false allegations. The CPI(M) controls the area”.
Murshidabad, 14 June : At least four persons died and over 500 were injured at Kashipur in Murshidabad district on Sunday evening when a stage and the pandals around it collapsed after a storm. The victims were part of a religious gathering attended by almost 1 lakh people. Over 50 people were rushed to hospital. Seven of them, including a child, are said to be serious.
Actually, the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) officials arrested a suspected Indian national at a house in central Dhaka’s posh residential locality Dhanmondi late last night, said widely-circulated Bengali dailies ‘Ittefaq’ and ‘Samakal’. The police is ascertaining whether the arrested man, from whom a passport was recovered with the name Shamsul Alam on it, has any link with the separatist Indian group ULFA, the newspapers said. Quoting an unnamed intelligence official, Samakal said the arrested man was Paresh Barua, the prime accused in the seizure of huge arms and ammunitions along the Chittagong coast in 2004. Police, however, did not confirm, it added.
However, a senior CID official dismissed the reports of Baruah’s arrest. "Following the reports in the two newspapers about the arrest of Paresh Barua, we checked the matter and found it to be hoax. No such person was arrested by our men as reported," the official told PTI.
2nd all-party meet on Aila cyclone relief to be held on Sunday evening
Kolkata, 14 June : The West Bengal Government has convened a second round of an all-party meeting in Kolkata on Sunday evening over cyclone relief issue.
The meet to be presided over the Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee is meant to expedite relief and restoration works in Aila-hit districts in the state.
Last Sunday, first round of the all-party meeting was not attended by Mamta-led Trinamool Congress, the main Opposition party in West Bengal. It is unlikely to attend today’s meet also.
Month-long Kolkata Hilsa festival attracting huge crowds
Kolkata, 14 June : Fans of the Hilsa fish, which is a major delicacy in Bengal, throng the ongoing Hilsa fish festival in Kolkata to gorge on their favourite dishes. rices of rupees 400-550 per kilogram notwithstanding, the month-long Hilsa festival is attracting huge crowds.
The festival, hosted by Tero Parbon, a Bengali cuisine restaurant in Kolkata, has a wide variety of Hilsa delicacies to offer. Recipes on offer include boneless Elish, a steamed fish dish called ‘Bhapa Elish’, fish cooked in poppy seeds called ‘Elish Posto’, a creamy preparation of Elish Malai, fried fish in the form of ‘Tele Mashla Bhaja Elish’, a sour fish preparation of ‘Elish tok’ and a lot more. This year, the restaurant is offering a special dish named ‘Elisher Horogouri’, which is famous across the Bangladesh. The speciality of the dish is that it tastes both sweet and spicy.
Subrata Ghosh Choudhuri, the director of the restaurant said, that the fish festival has almost become a yearly festival like Durga Puja for the Bengalis in the region. The festival has been organised to offer a wide variety of Hilsa delicacies before the fish hits the market.
The festival that started on June 10 will continue for a month. န Photos : Tero Parbon
ON AIR န Bangladesh Betar launches in Comilla
Dhaka, 14 June : Bangladesh Betar went fully 'on air' in Comilla on Saturday, after running test programmes for an hour each day since 15 May.
"The present government believes in free flow of information," information minister Abul Kalam Azad said, launching the new station. Highlighting the importance of radio, he said it had an important role in involving people with public development work. He called on the media to play a greater role in raising overall public awareness of issues involving health, education, environment and social welfare.
Mohammad Mahbubul Alam, director general of Bangladesh Betar, presided over the launch of the station at Bangladesh Betar Bhaban in Comilla.