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Thursday, November 5, 2009

Centre gives Rs 300 crore to W Bengal for Tiger conservation

PTI, New Delhi, 5 November : The Centre has released over Rs 300 crore to West Bengal for conservation of tigers in Sunderban and Buxa sanctuaries of the state.
The fund was released soon after the West Bengal Government signed the tripartite pact in mid-October with the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) on behalf of the Centre and directors of the two tiger reserves. A senior NTCA official said that around Rs 260 crores and Rs 38.58 crores were provided to Sunderban and Buxa sanctuaries respectively to make the parks free from human interference and their better management.
Under the government's rehabilitation policy, Rs 10 lakhs is being offered to each family to move out from the parks to make it safe for the endangered tigers whose number has declined to around 1,400 against 10,000 just a decade ago according to a recent official estimate.

PM calls for more US investment, continued support
Dhaka, 5 November : Prime minister Sheikh Hasina called for more US investment in Bangladesh on Thursday and hoped for continued US support in development efforts.
US ambassador James F Moriarty visited the prime minister after returning from a trip to his country. During the meeting Hasina said freeing people from the curse of poverty was the first step for ensuring human rights, the prime minister's deputy press secretary Mahbubul Haque Shakil told reporters after the meeting.
"The ambassador said the US State Department is very optimistic about the present Bangladesh government and its steps for poverty reduction, economic growth and stability."
Maoists ready for talks, but with conditions: Kishenji
PTI, Kolkata, 5 November : Faced with an impending security force operation, a top leader of the Maoists on Thursday said the they were ready for talks with the Centre provided some of their conditions were met, including withdrawal of paramilitary forces deployed in Maoist-hit states.
Detailing the conditions, top Maoist leader Kishenji told PTI over phone that the Centre would have to first withdraw para-military forces deployed in Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Orissa, Bihar, Jharkhand and parts of West Bengal and secondly the problems of tribals would have to be treated in a sympathetic way. "Also both the Centre and the state governments will have to apologise to the tribals for the prolonged torture meted out to them and the consequent suffering from the time of Independence," Kishenji said.
Asked about Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's statement yesterday in which he referred to the systematic exploitation and social, economic abuse of tribals over the years while emphasising on change of ways of dealing with them in the battle to win their hearts, Kishenji said, "It as nothing but an eyewash". Photo : AFP

Centre should caution West Bengal : State Congress
Kolkata, 5 November : West Bengal Congress today said the Centre should caution the state over repeated violence there but did not favour immediate imposition of President's Rule as demanded by Trinamool Congress.
State Congress working presidents Pradip Bhattacharya and Subrata Mukherjee told reporters here that they were not immediately demanding imposition of President's Rule, but the Centre should take some measures to caution the state government.

Bomb explosion injures four in Bangladesh capital
Dhaka, 5 November : At least four people, including two political leaders, were injured in a bomb explosion in Bangladesh's capital Dhaka on Thursday afternoon, police said.
Officer-in-charge of Shahbagh Police station in Dhaka Md. Rezaul Karim told Bengal Newz on Thursday, "The small bomb exploded near the office of the country's ruling party Awami League (AL) at around 2 p.m.(BDST)" All the three injured, including two district level leaders of the AL and a pedestrian, sustained minor injuries and have been rushed to a city hospital.
"There is so far no information in our hands who, why exploded the bomb in Gulistan, one of the city's main commercial hubs," Karim said, adding they will investigate to find out the culprits responsible for bomb explosion. Photo : Firoz Ahmed

West Bengal govt. to bans unauthorised entry into Filmfest venue
Kolkata, 5 November : Stepping up security measures for Nandan Cultural complex, the main venue for Kolkata Film Festival, West Bengal government has decided to ban unauthorised entry into its premises where many foreign delegates among others are scheduled to visit the annual film show beginning 10 November.
"This time, we have decided to ban entry of persons not holding valid entry passes or tickets. Parking of cars within and around the main venue will also be restricted," Chief Secretary Asok Mohan Chakraborty told newsmen. "We must tighten security. There will be so many foreign delegates," the chief secretary said.
Apparel exhibition kicks off
Xinhua, Dhaka, 5 November : The three-day Bangladesh Apparel and Textile Exposition (BATEXPO)-2009, the South Asian country's largest garments export fair, kicked off in capital Dhaka Thursday.
Bangladeshi Prime minister Sheikh Hasina inaugurated the annual event, hosted by Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA), at a hotel in Dhaka Thursday. The BGMEA said it is staging the fair this year with great expectation to bolster exports in the wake of global economic downturn which already squeezed export market for ready-made garment items to some extent.
"Our primary goal is to boost the market of apparel items in view of the fading recession," said the BGMEA chief Salam Murshedi while speaking at a press conference on the eve of the fair Wednesday. Photo : Abira Basu READ FULL STORY
Taxi strike in Kolkata likely from on 12 November
Kolkata, 5 November : Taxis in the metropolis are likely to go off the roads from 12 November, with an umbrella organisation of taxi unions calling an indefinite strike.
Taxi Bachao Committee president Bimal Guha said that the strike was being called due to non-delivery of new vehicles to replace old ones. Guha said that following Kolkata High Court order banning 15-year old vehicles, more than 7000 taxis went off the roads since June this year. "Accepting the direction, owners of old vehicles applied for replacements, but most are yet to get delivery of vehicles," he said. Thousands of owners and drivers are starving and could not meet basic necessities like payment of school fees of children and medical treatment, Guha said. Of the 7000, applications, only about 1,800 vehicles have been delivered by the manufacturers, leaving the rest in lurch, he claimed.
Guha led a protest in front of the head office of Hindustan Motors, which manufactures Ambassador cars used as taxis in the metropolis.

WB serious about law and order, says Biman Bose
Kolkata, 5 November : West Bengal’s ruling Left Front chairman Biman Bose Thursday said that the state government was “seriously looking” into the law and order situation against the backdrop of spiralling violence following growing Maoist activities and recurring political clashes.
Asked to react to Home Minister P. Chidambaram’s statement about the state’s law and order situation, Bose said: “Law and order is the state’s subject. I think our government is seriously looking into it. And it’s doing quite well in that. If the state government seeks any help from the centre, I think, the centre should also step forward and help them out,”.
Chidambaram Thursday asked the state government to strictly ensure the law and order in the state, irrespective of provocation for political violence.

Sri Lanka to merge with Andaman Islands : Sri Lanka's National paper
The Daily News, Colombo, 5 November : Sri Lanka Foreign Minister Rohitha Bogollagama told Parliament that the Indian owned Andaman Islands will come within the area that Sri Lanka hopes to make a claim to as part of its sea bed rights, to the UN Commission on the limits of the continental shelf.
The Minister said that the Government will discuss with India on this issue before making the final submissions to the UN Commission. The Minister was responding to a question raised by UNP MP Ravi Karunanayake about Sri Lanka’s claim for its sea bed rights. READ FULL STORY
Militant activities to feature in BSF-BDR talks today
Sylhet, Agartala, 5 November : The BSF will hand over a list of around 100 camps of different militant groups located in Bangladesh and seek action against them during a four-day meeting with top BDR commanders in Sylhet beginning on Wednesday, officials said.
The camps are basically “permanent in nature” and belong to outfits, including ULFA, NDFB, KLO and PLA, an official in the Tripura sector of BSF said.The meeting, coming ahead of DG-level talks between both the border-guarding forces, is the first such high-level meet after the mutiny in BDR headquarters earlier this year.BSF’s Tripura sector Inspector General S K Mishra will be leading the 17-member Indian side which will also include the IGs of Assam-Meghalaya Frontier and Mizoram-Cachar Frontier besides a representative from Union Home Ministry. The Bangladesh side will be headed by the Deputy Director General (DDG) of BDR, the official said.
The BSF, during the meeting, would also take up the issue of illegal poaching of natural resources from Bangladesh side along the border areas.
Extremist groups' rivalry led to 285 killings in B'desh
Dhaka, 5 November : Rivalries between Bangladesh’s Left extremist groups operating in districts bordering West Bengal state have led to 285 people being killed this year, a media report said Thursday.
Retributive killings are carried out against group rivals and suspected police informers for which “the dons call the shots from India”, The Daily Star newspaper claimed in a detailed report from Kushtia, a border town. Bangladesh media has been reporting on the government’s operations against ‘outlaws’ - as the Left extremists are called amid efforts by the West Bengal government to fight similar groups, clubbed together as ‘Naxalites’, a name they acquire from Naxalbari village from where the movement was launched four decades ago by Charu Majumder.
The newspaper said the network of different outlawed outfits in 10 southwestern districts of Bangladesh, especially in Kushtia, Jhenidah, Chuadanga and Meherpur, is very strong.
Despite ban, "Bullfight" goes on in Purulia district
Purulia, 5 November : What is common between Spain and Purulia ? The answer is : bullfight.
But there is a major difference between the fight in these two vastly different places. While the human beings themselves take on the angry bulls in the European country, in Purulia two buffaloes are made to clash while people enjoy the fight betting on them. The dangerous game which has claimed several lives of animals as well as human beings continues unabated in the rural areas of the district despite being banned by the state government. The owners of these animals rear the buffaloes for fights for quick money and in the name of honour. Two buffalos are made to fight for their lives, while thousands gather and bet on who will come out of it alive and on top. If the losing animal is lucky, it gets away alive.
A villager Apu Singh says, "It is a dangerous game and it gives pleasure to the public who are deprived. The bets are to the tune of Rs 10,000 and Rs 20,000 and the fights are prestige issue as if one loses then it hurts our ego." Photo : Avik Mukherjee

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