|| Bengal Newz (Bengali: বেঙ্গল নিউজ) is the first 24X7 online English language news daily portal - exclusively dedicated to entire Bengali speaking region and the world. ||

Thursday, February 18, 2010

15,000 more securitymen for anti-Maoists operations in states

PTI, New Delhi, 18 February : As Maoists continued to strike at will, the Centre is planning to deploy around 15,000 additional paramilitary personnel by April in the Maoist-affected states to deal with the extremists.
These men will be in addition to the 60,000 Central security personnel currently deployed to assist the state governments to counter the Maoists. The men, who are now being acquired from forces like CRPF, BSF and ITBP, will first get a six-week training on jungle warfare before being deployed on the ground, a Home Ministry official said.

India crush South Africa, And retain No.1 Test team status
Kolkata, 18 February : India managed to thwart a stubborn resistance from South Africa's Hashim Amla and the tailenders to clinch a series-levelling innings and 58 runs victory in the final cricket Test to retain their status as the number one Test team at Eden Gardens in Kolkata on Thursday.
The hosts, who needed to pick up the remaining seven wickets to draw the series 1-1, were made to wait till the very fag end of a dramatic fifth day's play for their moment of glory with Hashim Amla nearly carrying the proteas to safety with a defiant unbeaten 127.
Resuming at 115 for three after conceding a mammoth 347-run first innings lead, the South Africans were all out for 289 with just 15 minutes remaining on a nail-biting last day. Spinners Harbhajan Singh (5/59) and Amit Mishra (3/84) were the wreckers-in-chief as they ripped through the South African middle order but it was the stout resistance from Amla and the tailenders which delayed the victory. Photos : Reuters, Indrajit Dutta

Stateless Rohingya victims of violent crackdown in B'desh
Medecins Sans Frontieres International, 18 February : A violent crackdown against stateless Rohingya in Bangladesh is forcing thousands of people to flee in fear. Driven from their homes throughout Cox's Bazaar district by local authorities and citizens, many have sought refuge at Kutupalong makeshift camp. Here, medical organisation Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) is treating victims of beatings and harassment, including people the Bangladeshi Border Force has attempted to forcibly repatriate to Myanmar. As camp numbers continue to swell, conditions pose a significant risk to people's health.
In a report released today, MSF calls for an immediate end to the violence, along with urgent measures by the Government of Bangladesh and United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) to increase protection to Rohingya seeking asylum in the country. READ FULL STORY

17 killed, 20 injured in bus-lorry collision in North Dinajpur
PTI, Raiganj, 18 February : At least 17 people were killed and 20 others injured in a collision between a private bus and a truck in West Bengal's North Dinajpur district today, police said.
The incident took place on the national highway at Karandighi area in the district when both the vehicles veered to avert hitting two boys riding a bicycle, they said. All of the 17 killed were bus passengers, including its driver and cleaner. While 10 died on the spot, four persons who were rushed to a nearby hospital were declared brought dead, police said. The bus was en route to Siliguri from Balurghat in South Dinajpur district, they said, adding three of the injured were women.

Expert committee to probe Maoist attack on W Bengal camp
Kolkata, 18 February : West Bengal government Thursday constituted an expert committee to probe Monday’s Maoist attack that killed 25 people, including 24 security personnel, and left several injured in West Midnapore district.
‘The committee will look into various aspects like how the entire incident happened, how many Maoists participated in the operation, what was the level of alertness on the part of the security personnel etc,’ Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee told reporters here, three days after the most brazen Maoist attack in the state so far. He said the enquiry would also throw light on the nature of the attack and the modus operandi of the Maoists.
‘According to initial reports, we came to know that the operation was organised by different Maoist squads. Some people from outside the state also participated in the attack. We are investigating every possible aspect of the case,’ Bhattacharjee said. He declined to divulge any further details about the enquiry committee and post-attack intelligence inputs. He also admitted that ‘lack of alertness’ on the part of security personnel caused the attack. Photo : Reuters

Bangladesh Thai embassy counsellor dies in road accident
Dhaka, 18 February : The counsellor of Thailand embassy in Dhaka, Pannee Lickanajule, 55, who was injured in a road accident in Tangail Thursday afternoon, has been declared dead at Mirzapur Kumudini Hospital.
Pannee, who was traveling in the motorcade of visiting Thai Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn, sustained severe injuries as a pickup van collided with her microbus. Mirzapur police said the accident occurred around 1:00pm(BDST) on the Dhaka-Tangail highway when the princess was returning to Dhaka from Gaibandha.

Bangladesh may further discuss US’s TIFA proposal : Dipu
Dhaka, 18 February : Bangladesh's Foreign Minister Dr Dipu Moni on Thursday said BD may further discuss the US proposal for signing the Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA) or a US-Bangladesh Economic and Trade Cooperation Forum (UBETCF).
Dr Dipu Moni said this after US Ambassador to Bangladesh James F Moriarty proposed for singing of the TIFA or the UBETCF at the launching ceremony of US Trade Show at a city hotel. The foreign minister urged the US government to continue Generalised System of Preference (GSP) for Bangladeshi products to enable it to be a self-sufficient nation.
“Its focus has been changed from a aid dependant nation to a self-sufficient country. In this process, US GSP is keeping a vital role,” Dr Moni added.

UTDC reiterates demand for separation of 'Barak Valley'
Silchar, 18 February : Union Territory Demand Committee (UTDC) has reiterated its demand for separation of Barak Valley from Assam. Paritosh Paul Chowdhury, president of the Committee, said, “This is not a new demand of the people of this valley.” The movement for separation has been going on since 1948 which he claimed was the first of its kind in the country, he added.
Paul Chowdhury revealed the movement was rechristened under the banner of Cachar State Reorganization Committee and a memorandum on the mass demand as “Purbachal Reconsidered” was submitted to New Delhi for taking decision on the issue. He further said on the eve of the formation of Meghalaya in 1967, another memorandum signed by the prominent leaders of the time which included Mahitosh Purkayastha, Jyotsna Chanda, Nihar Ranjan Laskar, MPs and MLAs was presented to New Delhi, but there was no response. When the Mizoram Accord was signed between Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi and MNF Chief Laldenga, the demand was placed in front of the Prime Minister.
Again, when Arunachal Pradesh and Mizoram were made Union Territories in 1971, the movement for separation was spearheaded under the banner of the Union Territory Demand Committee, Paul Chowdhury said.

SSKM Hospital will soon set up a dermatology institute
A referral centre for neighbouring states & Bangladesh
PTI, Kolkata, 18 February : With an aim to deliver state-of-the-art healthcare services in dermatology, state-run SSKM Hospital would soon come up with an institute of dermatology and allied sciences here.
"This institute will be the first of its kind in our country in a government set-up," Prof R N Dutta, head of the department of dermatology of SSKM Hospital, said. "This will become a referral centre of the neighbouring states and also for Bangladesh," officials of the hospital said. LASER therapy, chemical peels, botulinum toxins therapy, fillers, vitiligo surgery, acne management, hair, dark patches and mole removal, facial rejuvenation would be dealt with in the new institute to be located within the hospital premises.
"It will not only deliver the latest in healthcare services in dermatology, but also in allied sciences like STIs, leprosy, AIDS, dermatosurgery, dermatopathology, onychology, trichology, cosmetic dermatology etc," Dutta said.