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Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Monsoon Low from Bay of Bengal, Now moved Inland

Kolkata lashed by heavy showers, Forecast for more
Kolkata, 8 September : Heavy showers since morning threw normal life out of gear as there was waterlogging and traffic snarls in several areas.
"A low pressure area has formed over the West Bengal coast and due to this, there will be heavy to very heavy rainfall over districts of Gangetic West Bengal till tomorrow noon," Regional met director G C Debnath told Bengal Newz. The city experienced 75 mm rainfall in six hours from 8.30 am, Debnath said. Waterlogging was reported from different parts of the city and traffic was moving very slowly leading to major snarls, police said.
Arterial roads like Park Street, Jawaharlal Nehru Avenue and C R Avenue were water-logged. Mayor Bikash Ranjan Bhattacharjee said water pumping stations were working fully to remove the accumulated water. Photo : Reuters

Mamata expels 3 TMC leaders in Vedic Village scam
Rajarhat, 8 September : Railways Minister and Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee Tuesday expelled three of her party leaders, including a former legislator and a sitting councillor, in connection with the Vedic Village land controversy.
The three expelled leaders are former legislator Tanmoy Mondal, Rajarhat-Gopalpur Municipality councillor Sukhen Chakraborty and a local Trinamool Congress leader Shankar Narayan. “No one is above the law and order, not even me. If anyone thinks he has become important so he will do whatever he wants, we’ll take action against that person,” Banerjee said at a political gathering at Rajarhat.

India-Bangladesh Talks :
Power import,River dredging,Boundary etc discussed
Pallab Bhattacharya, New Delhi, 8 September : Import of power from India to Bangladesh, allowing greater access to goods from Bangladesh into Indian market and New Delhi's 'positive interest' in dredging ports and rivers in the country figured prominently as the two countries held wide-ranging talks here today.
Water sharing from common rivers of the two countries, economic, security and border issues and increased connectivity in the region including India, Nepal, Bhutan and Bangladesh were also discussed during the two and a half hours talks at the Hyderabad House. BD Foreign Minister Dipu Moni led the Bangladesh delegation while Indian External Affairs Minister SM Krishna led the Indian team. The talks were preceded by a ten-minute one-to-one meeting between Moni and Krishna. Giving a substantive start to her four-day visit to India, Moni and Krishna discussed the entire range of bilateral issues. The meeting discussed the issues of cooperation in power sector, including import of power from India to Bangladesh and Indian assistance for upgrading our railway sector and procurement of locomotives, passenger coaches and buses. The two sides also discussed easing of customs and immigration procedures of the passenger train Maitree Express, running between Dhaka and Kolkata, to make the service more popular. They also discussed the possibility of Indian assistance for capital dredging of ports and rivers in Bangladesh to which Indian side expressed positive interest.
The two ministers also agreed to resolve the issues relating to demarcation of the boundary between the two countries, including exchange of enclaves and adverse possession in a single package. Photo : AFP

(L) Farmers plant saplings at a paddy field in Kadamtala village in Tripura.
(R) A farmer ploughs his paddy field in Kadamtala village, about 189 km (117 miles) north of Agartala.
Paddy sowing area fell to 27.28 million hectares as on August 20 from 34.14 million hectares in the corresponding period previous year because of weak monsoon rains. Photos : Reuters
Several W Bengal districts facing Flood like situation
Kolkata, 8 September : Several villages in South Bengal's districts are facing flood-like situation following the release of 3.5 lakh cusec water from the DVC (Damodar Valley Corporation).
Villagers were caught unawares after the DVC released water from the Maithon and Panchet dams, following heavy rainfall in Jharkhand and parts of Bihar. The rising water levels are causing floods in different areas of Burdwan, Bankura, Hooghly, Howrah and East and West Medinipur Districts. Consequently, over 200,000 people have been rendered homeless in about 150 villages. Among the worst affected are Raina-1 & 2, Khondoghosh, Jamalpur, Khanakul-1 & 2, Janjipara-1, Pursura, Udaynarayanpur, Amta-1 & 2, Uluberia, Ranichak, Ramchandrapur which have been submerged by the floods.
Over the past forty-eight hours 100 thousand cusecs of water from Kangshabati Barrage was also released following heavy rainfall. Rivers Damodar, Kangshabati, Shilabati and Gandheswari are also flowing above the danger mark.

Meanwhile, West Bengal Government has blamed the DVC authorities for releasing the water without any prior information to villages located downstream. Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee has written a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, urging him to instruct the DVC to control the release of water. The CM has also requested that water be released from the dams in phases to avoid floods. Photos : Niraj Modi, Arpan Mukherjee

Tripura to withdraw Compulsory security convoy sys
Agartala, 8 September : Tripura government has decided to withdraw the 16-year-old compulsory security convoy system for vehicles passing through the Assam- Agartala National Highway, considered to be the lifeline of the state, from Monday following review of the threat perception.
The decision was taken at a high level meeting chaired by Chief Minister Manik Sarkar yesterday which reviewed the law and order situation, Director General of Police (DGP) Pranay Sahaya said today. The meeting was attended by the DGP, Commissioner of Transport department, top brass of Central and state paramilitary forces. Even after withdrawal of the escort, a full-proof alternative security arrangement would be in place to ensure security coverage to the passengers and patrolling of security forces would be intensified on the highway, Sahaya said.
He said CRPF would look after the entire security coverage as they were providing the security to the convoy of vehicles for quite long time. Moving of vehicles in convoy in compulsory escort system was introduced in 1993 following militant attacks on buses and trucks.

Police seizes fake currency notes in WB & Tripura
Malda, 8 September : A man has been arrested here for running a fake currency racket and counterfeit notes with a face value of Rs three lakh recovered from his possession, police said today.
Acting on a specific information, police raided Madhughat area of the district last night and arrested Tufan Sheikh, a resident of Mohadipur area bordering Indo-Bangla border, they said. Two days back, police had arrested a person from Kulpi area of South 24 Parganas district with fake currency notes.
During interrogation, the arrested person revealed that he had been given the fake notes by Tufan Sheikh, who would be visiting Madhughat area on Monday, they said.
Agartala, 8 September : Fake currency with the nominal value of Rs.500,000 was seized from a Tripura village bordering Bangladesh and two men were arrested, officials said here Tuesday.
The seizure and arrests were made during searches in Sobhapur village along the India-Bangladesh border, 60 km west of Agartala, Monday night by a joint team of Assam Rifles troopers and Tripura Police.

Poultry traders blocked Dhaka-Sylhet highway for an hour
Dhaka, 8 September : Several hundred vehicles got stranded for an hour on busy Dhaka-Sylhet highway as over 500 poultry traders and workers put up road barricade at Bhelanagar in Narsingdi Sadar Upazila today protesting import of eggs from India.
Traffic movement on the highway resumed after an hour as the egg and chick producers of the district under the banner of Bangladesh Poultry Industries Association, Narsingdi unit, withdrew the blockade at 1:00pm (BDST).

Main accused Gaffar in Vedic Village violence arrested
TMC and CPM politicians name on main suspect's lips
Kolkata, 8 September : The prime accused in last month’s violent clash over a football match that saw one person being killed and the miscreants hiding in the Vedic Village resort was arrested Tuesday morning.
Gaffar Mollah was arrested with five others from Bankura's Belabadhi village at Indus, where he was hiding in his cousin’s place. He had been on the run since 23 August, when a violent clash over a football match in Rajarhat snowballed into a major controversy over forcible acquisition of land. The escalating debate rocked the state’s political landscape forcing the state government to cancel two IT township projects involving giants Infosys and Wipro.
The incident led to the revelation that the Vedic Village’s holding company Vedic Realty, a real estate player was involved in grabbing land forcibly in the area with the help of Gaffar and his group. Photo : Avijit Mondal
PNHZP, known for its rare Red Pandas, has very poor security measures
Darjeeling, 8 September : The Padmaja Naidu Himalayan zoological park in Darjeeling, which is known for its Red Pandas, lacks security measures, which a zoo of any international caliber is expected to have.
The zoo is the only specialised centre in the country, which is globally recognised for its conservation breeding programmes of Red Panda, Snow Leopards, Tibetan Wolf and other highly endangered animal species. Thousands of tourists from all across the globe come here every year to witness the rare species of this Himalayan region.
U.S State Dept. official arrives in Dhaka Wednesday
Dhaka, 8 September : US Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs Michael S Owen arrives in Dhaka on Wednesday on a two-day visit to Bangladesh.
During his visit, Owen will meet with government officials, parliamentarians, business people and members of civil society to discuss a range of regional and bilateral issues, a US embassy press statement said in Dhaka on Tuesday. This is Owen's first visit to the South Asian country.
Bangladesh's resort city Sylhet awaits luxury resort
Sylhet, 8 September : A local company has endeavoured to build the country's first five-star resort in Srimangal, primarily targeting expatriate Bangladeshis visiting Sylhet and its environs.
Sylhet, a city with about 500,000 population in north-eastern Bangladesh, has been attracting new investments of hotels, shopping malls and luxury housing estates, brought mainly by expatriates living in the United Kingdom. Grand Sultan Tea Resort and Golf sprawling over 45 hectares is located next to Lawachhara National Park in Moulvibazar. The resort will have 167 rooms, including 20 suites and a presidential suite.
"We hope to begin commercial operations by the end of 2010," Khawaja Tipu Sultan, chairman of Excursion and Resorts Bangladesh Ltd, the resort owning company, said.

RBI on mission to take Banking to Tripura villages
Pitra (Tripura), 8 September : Radharani Sutradhar, a middle-aged homemaker in this village not far from capital Agartala, wants to open a bank account, but there is no bank in her village or any village nearby. Fellow villager Hira Chowdhury was refused a loan by a bank at the district headquarters.
All that’s going to change, says the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), the India’s central bank. “Don’t worry, banks will come to all of you, provide you loan, open your accounts and provide other banking facilities at your door steps,” RBI deputy governor Usha Thorat told Sutradhar, Chowdhury and hundreds of other villagers last week at an outreach camp organised by the apex bank in southern Tripura.
“It is not possible to set up banking networks in all the 565,000 villages across the country, but the RBI wants banking services to reach all these places,” Thorat told the gathering at this hillside village, just 70 km from Agartala. Photo : Parthajit Dutta

Train derailed, Railway movements halt in Lalmonirhat
UNB, Lalmonirhat, 8 September : Rail communications remained snapped in Lalmonirhat as a train derailed midway between Bhotmari and Parulia rail-stations in the district last night.
Bangladesh Railway sources said three compartments and the engine of the Burimari-bound train veered off the track around 11:00pm(BDST) halting the train movements in the district. The rail communications could not be restored till filing of the report this afternoon. However, there was no report of casualties in the accident.

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