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Thursday, April 1, 2010

Gutsy Ganguly guides Kolkata Knight Riders to a 24-run victory

Kolkata, 1 April : Sourav Ganguly led from the front with a blazing 54-ball 88 as a resurgent Kolkata Knight Riders bulldozed a hapless Deccan Chargers by 24 runs in their return-leg Indian Premier League match on Thursday.
Ganguly blasted nine fours and five sixes and added 78 runs for the fourth wicket with David Hussey to take the Kolkata Knight Riders to a competitive 181 for six at the Eden Gardens. The home team then returned to restrict the defending champions to 157 for five to zoom to the fifth place, just behind Rajasthan Royals with eight points from eight matches in the points table.
Barring offie Mohnish Parmar, the KKR bowlers put up a disciplined performance with Shane Bond, Angelo Matthews, Murali Kartik, Ajit Agarkar and Chris Gayle taking one wicket each to contribute to their team's win. Photo : Avijit Mondal

Forces regain control over large areas in troubled Lalgarh
PTI, New Delhi, 1 April : Security forces have regained control over large tract of lands, which were under occupation of Maoists, in trouble-torn Lalgarh in West Bengal and they are intensifying operations to flush out the extremists from the remaining areas.
Home Ministry officials said forces have taken control of several blocks and restored civil administration which has started development activities as per the government's anti-Maoist strategy. After months, several police stations have reopened and schools and offices were functioning normally in many parts of West Midnapore district, they said. Home Minister P Chidambaram is expected to visit Lalgarh on Sunday to assess the ground situation there and boost the confidence of security forces and other officials.
During the recent operations in Lalgarh, security forces also killed three Maoists and arrested 15 others.
UN offers assistance in 1971's Bangladesh war crimes trial
Dhaka, 1 April : The UN on Thursday offered technical assistance to Bangladesh in conducting a trial into allegations of war crimes during the 1971 Liberation War against the Bengali-speaking perpetrators.
"UN is willing to provide technical assistance to the Bangladesh government to ensure an internationally accepted trial" of the perpetrators of crimes like massacres, rapes and arson, UN Resident Coordinator in Dhaka Renata Lok Dessallien told newsmen after a meeting with Law Minister Shafique Ahmed. She said the UN would also consider sending observers to witness the trial into allegations of "crimes against humanity" as requested by Bangladesh and it expected the trial to be conducted in line with the international standard.
Later talking to newsmen the law minister said measures were taken to make the trial "transparent and internationally acceptable" and "there should not be any doubt regarding the standard of the trial".

Maoists silence deepens mystery over leader Kishenji
PTI, Bhubaneswar, 1 April : The condition of top Maoist leader Koteswar Rao alias Kishenji continued to be wrapped in a shroud of mystery with the CPI (Maoist) maintaining silence and West Bengal and Orissa governments having no information about the dreaded rebel leader.
Despite raids at many places including hospitals, nursing homes and ayurvedic treatment centres, Orissa police are clueless about Kishenji, said a senior police officer associated with the anti-Maoist operation in the state.
Kishenji, who used to make media statements regularly, is not heard for a considerable period and this strengthens speculations that he might have been either injured or dead or in hibernation, the officer said.
India launches biggest national census 'since beginning of mankind'
New Delhi, 1 April : The projected population of India is expected to hit 1.628 billion in 2050, when it is expected to become the world's most populous countryIndia begins a ten-yearly national census today that it has hailed as the biggest attempt in human history to count, classify and ultimately issue identity cards to the citizens of a single nation.
China, with its population of 1.3 billion people, remains just ahead of India’s 1 billion at the last count, but Indian officials say that this census will be far more comprehensive and logistically complex than the last Chinese one in 2000.
India has conducted a survey of this kind without fail every ten years since 1872, under the British Raj, when its population was calculated at 236 million. This year’s census will be on an unprecedented scale, involving 2.5 million officials and 12,000 tonnes of paperwork printed in 18 languages and distributed from the Himalayas in the north to the Andaman Islands in the south.
At an estimated cost of $1.3 billion (£860 million), it will not only count the population and gather data on fertility, literacy and mortality, but also, for the first time, include questions on the number of mobile phones in households, internet connections and bank accounts - a reflection of the past decade’s economic boom.
Six killed on NH-6 in Howrah's Khadinan More road mishap
Howrah, 1 April : Six persons, including three women and a child, were killed when the car in which they were travelling was hit by a truck on the highway near Khadinan More in Howrah district today, police said.
The car had turned turtle on NH-6 after the truck hit it from behind, they said adding all the car occupants were killed on the spot. The victims are yet to be identified.
Biman Bangladesh Airlines to get back its original old logo
Dhaka, 1 April : Biman Bangladesh Airlines Ltd will get back its original logo and livery.
The cabinet in a meeting yesterday decided to reinstate the "Balaka" (Crane) logo and livery on its aircrafts. The state-run airline is now awaiting nod from its executive board. "We have received a letter from the Ministry of Civil Aviation and Tourism in this regard. We will place the matter in the next board meeting," said Muhammad Zakiul Islam, managing director and chief executive of Biman.
About two months ago, the 38-year-old airlines formally launched its new logo and livery as part of its objective to re-brand and revive its image infusing dynamism in service. The initiative of re-branding was taken during the tenure of caretaker government based on a deal to purchase 10 aircrafts with Boeing, an US aircraft manufacturer.
Gorkha Janamukti Morcha wants demarcation of territory
Kolkata, 1 April : Gorkha Janamukti Morcha has made it clear at the last official level tripartite talks in Delhi that discussion on any point other than demarcation of territory was only a "waste of time", the party's Press and Publicity chief Dr Harka Bahadur Chhetri told Bengal Newz.
Chhetri, who was a member of the delegation led by Roshan Giri, told Bengal Newz that West Bengal Home Secretary Ardhendu Sen was made to understand GJM's stand on territory. GJM chief Bimal Gurung in a revised proposal had agreed to an interim arrangement in the Hills till 31 December, 2011 subject to acceptance of its territorial map.

B'desh forest model can be adopted to save Indus Delta
Jan Khaskheli, The News, Karachi, 1 April : The World Wildlife Fund-Pakistan is planning to initiate consultation with all the stakeholders, including the government and local communities, for the rehabilitation of the Indus Delta that has lost a wide area due to sea erosion for the last three decades. In this regard, the WWF-Pakistan organised a field trip for its staff, government officials and journalists to a forest in Bangladesh called Sundarban - the largest mangroves forest in the world and a natural wildlife sanctuary - to observe the forest’s model which might be helpful to save the Indus Delta. READ FULL STORY
Cyclonic storm kills 7, damages 16,000 houses in NE India
IANS, Agartala, Aizawl, 1 April : At least seven people were killed and nearly 16,000 houses destroyed as pre-monsoon rains accompanied by strong winds and hailstorms continued to create havoc in Tripura, Mizoram, Manipur and southern Assam, officials said here Thursday.
According to officials, between Sunday and Wednesday night, a cyclonic rainstorm accompanied by heavy lightning killed three people each in Tripura and Mizoram while a woman tea worker died in southern Assam. Tripura was the worst hit by this seasonal cyclonic rainstorm accompanied by heavy lightning. A 21-year-old youth was killed and seven others injured when they were struck by lightning. Two women died when their bamboo houses collapsed in different places in southern Tripura.
'Lightning and thunder, accompanied by high velocity winds, have lashed Tripura during the past four days, damaging standing crops and uprooting electric poles, telephone lines and big trees besides partially and completely destroying over 9,000 houses,' an official of the state relief department said. Photos : Chimoy Roy

Cultural fest Octave '10 on NE cultural heritage concludes
Kolkata, 1 April : A three-day cultural festival, 'Octave 2010', showcasing northeastern cultural heritage, has concluded in Kolkata. The festival was organised by the Eastern Zonal Cultural Centre (EZCC) between 29 March and 31 March.
Over 200 dancers, musicians, crafts persons from Arunachal Pradesh , Assam , Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland , Sikkim and Tripura were participated in the event.
"Here in EZCC we were organised a programme called 'Octave', where we were presented the folk art and the culture of the north eastern states. There were eight northeastern states as we know, but many of us don't know about the richness of their culture. So we have arranged the programme. Here we were presented folk dances of all the eight northeastern states. In addition to that, we have also organised a fashion parade," said Dr. Jayanta Sthanapati, Director of the Eastern Zonal Cultural Centre (EZCC). Handicrafts from all the northeastern states were put on display at the stalls.

Tiger spotted in North Bengal's 'Buxa Tiger Reserve'
PTI, Buxa, 1 April : In a rare moment for North Bengal's Buxa, where no big cat has been spotted since its creation in 1983, a Royal Bengal tiger has been spotted in the reserve and captured on film.
A beat officer, Manindra Sarkar, while looking for scats on March 24 had a chance encounter with the beast and photographed it and its kill in the Chuniajhora beat of the Buxa Tiger Reserve (BTR). Wildlife officials are excited over the sighting. It was believed that around a dozen tigers were in the reserve, but though forest officials had heard their roar, none had been sighted earlier.
"This is the first time that a tiger has been photographed in Buxa. It proves that tigers do exist in the sanctuary," state chief wildlife warden SB Mondol told PTI.