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Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Antique idols worth Rs 5.3 million seized in North Dinajpur

Raiganj, 12 August : Customs officials on Thursday recovered antique idols of Hindu gods and goddesses, worth Rs 5.3 million in the international market, from West Bengal's North Dinajpur district.
"Last night, Siliguri customs team led by Siddharth Gupta, Superintendent, went to North Dinajpur district and near Raiganj there is a place called Bondhur. From there it recovered around 13 antique pieces and these antique pieces are believed to be of 8th and 10th century origin and the value as being assessed is around Rs 53 lakh(Rs 5.3 million)," said Jyoti Kumar Bubana, Assistant Commissioner of Customs Department.
The agency is conducting a probe, however no arrest has been made. Smugglers are suspected to use the route from Uttar Dinajur district to smuggle antique idols to Nepal through Siliguri border.

Siliguri, 12 August :
School children dressed as Krishna & Radha, stretch to reach an earthen pot containing chocolate treats during a fancy dress competition ahead of Janamashtmi festival.
Janamashtmi is the birth anniversary of Krishna and will be celebrated across India on 14 August. Photos : Reuters
Joint forces,Maoists exchange fire in troubled Lalgarh
IANS, Kolkata, 12 August : Security forces opened fire at suspected Maoist rebels in West Bengal’s troubled Lalgarh Wednesday afternoon and the gunbattle continued for over an hour in the forested area, police said.
“Yes, there was an incident of heavy firing between the joint security forces and the Maoist rebels in Bhulabheda forest area of West Midnapore district today,” Kuldeep Singh, state Inspector General (Western Range) of Police, told IANS.
He said such incidents were occurring in and around Lalgarh almost every day.

“No casualty has been reported on the part of security forces in today’s firing,” Singh said.
Dhaka Court asks Khaleda, Tarique to appear 30 Aug
Dhaka, 12 August : A Dhaka court today differed the hearing of charges in the Zia Orphanage Trust case brought against Opposition Leader Khaleda Zia, her son Tarique Rahman and four others, as none of the accused appeared before the court.
Judge ANM Bashir Ullah of the Metropolitan Sessions Judge's Court also directed BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia, her son Tarique Rahman and four others to appear before the court on 30 August to face hearing on acceptance of charges brought against them for embezzling Tk 2.10 crore by forming fraudulent Zia Orphanage Trust. The court will also hear a petition filed by Khaleda's counsel stating that his client could not appear before the court today on security ground.
The Anti-Corruption Commission on 5 August, this year pressed charges against BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia, and five others in the case.
Authorities in Tripura screen truckers at border for swine flu symptoms
Agartala, 12 August : Authorities in Tripura, which shares its border with Bangladesh, have stationed medical staff at border checkpoints to screen truckers for swine flu symptoms.
The state which has around 857 km long border with Bangladesh, has deputed seven surveillance teams comprising of 14 doctors to screen the truckers for symptoms of HINI virus. “A lot of people are coming and going, and they may bring it (swine flu) from outside, posing a higher threat to our own state. We are actually screening people for flu like symptoms, common cold like symptoms. We check them and interrogate them and if we find that they have the potential for flu, we forward them to the state hospital,” said Pranab Kanti Dutta, a medical officer, on Wednesday.
The virus has so far claimed 18 lives in India and has infected close to a thousand people.

Tipaimukh : March towards Delhi on 8 Jan next year
Dhaka, 12 August : Tipaimukh Dam Prevention Committee and Sylhet Division Development Action Council announced 'march towards Delhi' from 8 to 15 January next year to protest the construction of Tipaimukh dam, says a press release.
The announcement came after the law enforcers barred their protest march near Zakiganj border in Sylhet on Monday. After being barred by police they held a protest rally there.
The demonstration was moving towards Manipur in India through the border area with participation of several thousands of people.

Eastern Rail to recreate past with Steam Engine trips
Kolkata, 12 August : Eastern Railway is planning a heritage run on 16 August between Howrah and Bandel on a steam locomotive to commemorate 155 years of train running in eastern India.
"The first train in eastern India was flagged off between Howrah and Hooghly on 15 August, 1854. We shall try to recreate this historic journey this year. There will be a programme at Howrah station after which the special train will start for Bandel. The train will be hauled by a steam locomotive that has already arrived at Howrah from Southern Railway for this unique run," a senior officer said.
Though railway minister Mamata Banerjee or Governor Gopalkrishna Gandhi may be busy elsewhere on that day, the train is expected to be flagged off by Sultan Ahmed, minister of state for tourism.
Many children will also enjoy the heritage run. There will be special boarding passes for passengers. Staff will wear special uniforms.

RPG eyes Rs 1,700-cr loan for Haldia thermal project
Kolkata, 12 August : The Goenkas of RPG are close to stitching up a debt finance of nearly Rs 1,700 crore for its 600 mw greenfield thermal venture in Haldia.
Talks are on with a battery of domestic and international lenders and a final call on the loan-mix will be taken once CESC finalises the local-to-imported coal ratio for the project, a senior company executive said.
Indications are that CESC will import about 30% of the requisite coal (roughly 2.8 mt per annum) for the Haldia greenfield venture, while a majority 70% will be sourced from the Mahanadi coalfields in Orissa.

Prof Md. Yunus receives US Presidential medal today
Dhaka, 12 August : Nobel laureate Prof Muhammad Yunus will receive the US Presidential Medal from President Barack Obama at a White House ceremony today.
Obama will award the Presidential Medal of Freedom to 16 people. Prof Yunus will be the first Bangladeshi to receive the coveted award for his pioneering role in alleviating global poverty. Yunus introduced "micro credit" to provide loans to poor people who don't have collateral.
He founded the Grameen Bank in 1983 in his native Bangladesh to provide low-interest loan to poor people. Yunus was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2006 for his works.

Malda, South Dinajpur districts border areas on Alert
Bernama (Malda), 12 August : An "operational alert" has been put in place by Border Security Force (BSF) in Malda and South Dinajpur districts, in West Bengal bordering Bangladesh, in stepped up security measures in the run-up to the Independence Day celebrations in the state.
The five battalions in the 300km international border have been doubled during the period of alert, which came into force Monday and would remain in force till 17 August, acting DIG (BSF) B K Jha said. Thirty percent of the border comprised unfenced riverine and lowlands.
"Special watch has been kept on the unfenced areas," Jha said.

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