"I invite Chidambaram to arrest and jail me for 10 years if the central government thinks I am a Maoist," the Magsaysay award winner told PTI here. The renowned writer who has spent most of her life projecting the plight of the tribals and promoting their rights said, "I condemned police atrocities against the Naxalites in the '70s and I am not scared that by supporting the right cause I will be labelled a Maoist."
Controversial Trinamool Congress MP Kabir Suman, whose statements supporting Maoists embarrassed party supremo Mamata Banerjee said, "I have been advocating the cause of tribals all through.
London, 7 May : A new record has been set with the election of several woman candidates with origins in the Indian sub-continent, including the first Muslim woman MP Shabana Mahmood, who won on a Labour ticket.
Among the woman winners were Indian-origin Priti Patel (Conservative) and Valerie Vaz (Labour). The latter's brother, Keith Vaz, was once again elected from the Leicester East constituency. Results indicate that the number of MPs from ethnic minority background will break the previous record of 15 in the 2005 election. Bengalee ledy Rushanara Ali (Labour) romped home victorious from the Bethnal Green and Bow constituency with a majority of over 11,000 votes.
Shipping Minister Shahjahan Khan announced the new structure raising wages by 60-50 percent following a tripartite meeting between the vessel owners, workers and the government representatives. The launch workers' group decided to go for the strike as it believes the new pay scale did not meet its expectation since it demanded 300-350 percent increase in the salary. Meanwhile, the shipping minister on Friday warned of action against any attempt to disrupt the river communications.
Speaking at a press briefing on the new pay scale at Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority (BIWTA) auditorium in the city, he termed the strike illogical and unlawful.
PTI, New Delhi, 7 May : Days after reprimanding him for his "quite unbecoming" behaviour, Speaker Meira Kumar today said Trinamool Congress leader Sudip Bandopadhyay was "second to none" in upholding the values and traditions of Lok Sabha.
"Let me make it clear that I consider you as one of the senior and serious-minded members of the House. I have always appreciated your contribution in the House," the Speaker said in a letter to the TMC Chief Whip.
Dhaka, 7 May : Ten of the 28 seamen will arrive in Dhaka tomorrow from Benin after being stranded for four months on ships offshore the West African country.
"We are extremely happy. We cannot express our emotion in words," Iqramul Haque, one of the ten seamen, told The Daily Star over the phone from a hotel in Benin last night. The ten crewmembers were brought to the mainland on Tuesday. The rest had already been taken to Benin's Cotonou port, said an official at foreign ministry in Dhaka. They will first fly to Nigeria from Benin and arrive in Dhaka via Dubai by a flight of Emirates airline, he said.
“In the past, evil forces for lust of power repeatedly denied people’s democratic rights and their right to vote,” she told journalists at Gano Bhaban on the occasion of the 3rd anniversary of her homecoming from the United States during the army-controlled caretaker government. On this day in 2007, Hasina returned home fighting down the restrictions imposed by the erstwhile caretaker government on her re-entry into Bangladesh in a bid to implement the so-called minus-two theory.
“We believe in people’s power and we stand for it. People of this country must remain vigilance against anti-democratic evil forces,” the prime minister said.
PTI, Imphal, 7 May : Six Naga MLAs in Manipur have resigned in protest against the state government disallowing NSCN(IM) General Secretary T Muivah to visit his ancestral village in the state.
The MLAs, all independents, who were camping in Delhi, have sent their resignation letters to Speaker Budhi Singh by fax, assembly sources said on Friday. The sources said the Speaker had received the resignation letters, but they have not been accepted so far.
People blocked the Dhaka-Tangail Highway for about two hours after three people were killed and two injured in an accident in Mirzapur upazila of Tangail. Locals said a Dhaka-bound bus from a northern district of the country crashed into a motorbike and a CNG-run auto rickshaw coming from the opposite direction in Kodimdolla area at about 7:30am(BDST).
In another accident, three people were killed and five others injured as a tractor ploughed through a bazaar on Dhaka-Charsindur road in Polash upazila.
Witnesses said the tractor ploughed through Charsindur bazaar as its driver lost control over the steering, leaving Dana Miah and Dulal dead on the spot and injuring another six people. Among the injured, an unidentified man died on way to the upazila health complex. Others were admitted to the same health complex.
PTI, Shillong, 7 May : Two ULFA militants surrendered with weapons before the BSF today, which apprehended three infiltrators from different places in Assam.
Madhav Bora and Abhijay Mising, both belonging to the outfit's '28th battalion', surrendered before the border guards in Golaghat district. They also deposited a .22 mm pistol, a 9 mm pistol and some live rounds, a BSF statement issued here said. The militants joined the outfit in 2000 and claimed they underwent training in Myanmar. However, a person Sagar Toppo, who claimed to be 'commander' of the ULFA's '28th battalion', called up local TV channels and said the two did not belong to the group, the statement said.
In Dhubri district, the BSF apprehended three persons hailing from Bangladesh while they were trying to enter India. Fake Indian currency having face value of Rs 3,000 was seized from them, the statement said.
It is now definite as all the parliamentary candidates nominated by Labour Party, Conservative, Liberal Democrat, Respect and the Green Party from London's Bangla Town area are all Bangalees. Meanwhile, Britain voted yesterday in the closest general election for decades, with polls suggesting David Cameron's opposition Conservatives will win most seats but not enough to form a government alone.
Rushanara Ali is contesting with Labour Party ticket while Zakir Khan from Conservatives. Green Party nominated Farid Bakht and Liberal Democrat chose Ajmal Masroor. Abjol Miah is contesting from Respect-Unity Coalition. Rushanara Ali has a strong chance of winning from Bangla Town as a Labour MP. Some of the major Bangalees' organisations and the press have pledged their support for her.