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Tuesday, June 29, 2010

To detect illegal Poppy cultivation, NCB uses satellite images

Kolkata, 29 June : In a bid to identify illegal poppy cultivation in West Bengal, the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) has resorted to the use of satellite imagery. Nearly 2,100 acre of illegal poppy cultivation has been destroyed by the new system in Birbhum, Malda, Murshidabad and Nadia districts.
Opium extracted from the cultivation is converted to crude heroin in Murshidabad district, said an NCB official, adding that there has been a rise in the trafficking of the contraband from areas like Bongaon in North 24 Parganas, besides Lalgola and Plassey. Kolkata, Asansol and Raniganj comprise the major drug consuming areas in the state, added the official.
NCB Zonal Director K Shankar also said a narcotics scanner would be set up at Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International Airport to curb drug smuggling.

Jamaat leaders Nizami and Mujahid held by B'desh police
Dhaka, 29 June : Jamaat-e-Islami ameer Motiur Rahman Nizami and secretary general Ali Ahsan Mohammad Mujahid were arrested Tuesday afternoon, hours after a magistrate court here issued warrants of arrest in connection with a criminal case over hurting religious sentiment of Muslims.
Police sources said Nizami was arrested from in front of National Press Club while Mujahid was detained from Savar. Police arrested Nizami as he came out of the Press Club after attending a programme.

Nadia man in Guinness Book for using maximum stamps
Kolkata, 29 June : A man from Nadia district has made it to the Guinness Book of World Records by using maximum number of stamps on a parcel.
According to the write-up, Guinness authorities confirmed the feat of Manoj Kumar Mondal, who had sent a parcel to their office in London using 3809 Indian postal stamps. One stamp was of the denomination of 10 paise, 86 stamps were of 15 paise, 3649 stamps of 25 paise and 73 of Rs 10.
Earlier this month, he got a letter from the Guinness authorities saying that he has broken the record of Les Stewart, an Australian, who had used 3400 stamps in his parcel in 1999.

Bangladesh Representative elected for UN's 'CEDAW'
Dhaka, 29 June : A Bangladesh Representative was elected to a body of United Nations in an elections held at the United Nations in New York on Monday.
Ismat Jahan, the Bangladesh candidate for the 'Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women' (CEDAW) secured the highest votes in elections held at the United Nations. Ismat, a former Permanent Representative to the UN and currently Bangladesh Ambassador in Brussels, got 153 votes in the 185 member treaty body, said a message received here on Tuesday.
This is the highest number of votes secured by a candidate in the history of CEDAW elections. She will serve as a member of the committee for 4-year terms 2011-2014. The credentials of the candidate, Bangladesh's commitment to women's empowerment, an effective and sustained election campaign and Bangladesh's standing as an active, responsible and contributing member of the international community are among factors credited for this impressive showing.
Bangladesh is currently elected member of 32 UN Committees/Commissions/bodies/caucuses, which is the highest in recorded history.

24-hours Assam transport strike evoked a mixed response
Guwahati, 29 June : A 24-hours motor transport strike in Assam against the hike in fuel prices Tuesday evoked a mixed response, with most public transport going off the roads.
The strike, which began at 6 am, was called by the Assam chapter of the All India Road Transport Workers Federation. The Federation appealed to all motorists to keep off the roads. Most public transport operators decided to support the strike. A majority of the private vehicles plied as usual. “Barring few stray incidents of stone pelting by strike supporters, there has been no major incident of violence,” a police official said.
A number of trade unions, including the Assam unit of the Centre of Indian Trade Unions, supported the strike.

West Bengal government to raise Industrial Security Force
Kolkata, 29 June : West Bengal government said it would raise its own industrial security force to provide protection against the Maoist menace and other threats.
Inspector General of Police (Law and Order) Surajit Kar Purakayastha said a battalion of the force, headed by a commandant would be raised. 'It will be modelled after the Central Industrial Security Force. It will help the government ensure better protection to the power plants and other industrials units,' Purakayastha said after a meeting of the security advisory committee for power plants here.
The government has already beefed up security at the Santaldihi thermal power plant in Bankura district and the Purulia storage power projects. Maoists are active in both Purulia and Bankura districts.

5,000 rounds of cartridges, ammunition seized in Kolkata
PTI, Kolkata, 29 June : Over 5,000 rounds of .315 cartridges, possibly meant for the Maoists, were found in a car after it was intercepted by police for violating traffic rules near Shovabazar Metro Railway station here.
A traffic sergeant on a motorcycle stopped the car bearing a Bihar registration number yesterday at Jatindra Mohan Avenue for jumping a red light and asked for the papers, police said today. When one of the occupants of the car alighted, the driver sped off with the traffic sergeant chasing it, police said, adding the man who had got down fled from the spot. The sergeant caught up with the car and managed to stop it, as two others in it fled, the sources said.
A search of the car revealed 5000 rounds of .315 bore ammunition, they said, which was possibly meant for the Maoists. Photo : PTI
Export - import activities in Akhaura land port suspended
UNB, Brahmanbaria, 29 June : Export and import activities between Bangladesh and India through the Akhaura land port remained suspended on Tuesday due to daylong work stoppage by Indian workers.
Port and C & F Association sources said trade through the port was suspended from 8am as the workers of Agartala port in Tripura abstained from their works to press home their different demands, including wage hike.
No more lonely nights for 1-horned male rhino at Sipahejala
PTI, Agartala, 29 June : The one-horned male rhino ambling its way through the greens of Sipahejala Zoo in Tripura will at last get a female company, courtesy an animal exchange programme sanctioned by the Central Zoo Authority.
A female one-horned rhino would be brought from the Sanjay Gandhi Botanical and Zoological Garden in Patna under the programme to give company to Pradip, the male rhino, who had never seen a female of the species ever since it was brought to the zoo in 1994.
Ajit Bhowmik, the director of the zoo, said, "We desperately needed a female one-horned rhino to engage in mating with Pradip, the lone one-horned male rhino".
The exchange programme aims at increasing the count of rapidly disappearing species of clouded leopards, pigtailed macaques and spectacled langoors in the Sipahejala Zoo, housed in the Sipahejala sanctuary, he said. The Central Zoo Authority under the Environment and Forests Ministry had given permission to go ahead with the exchange programme, he said.
The one-horned rhino is mainly found at Kaziranga in Assam, Nepal and parts of South Africa. "We also demanded a Hippopotamus from the zoo in Patna and drew attention of the CZA, but the project is yet to be cleared," he said.
Sipahejala sanctuary, situated about 20 km from state's capital Agartala, is a hot spot of bio-diversity which came into existence in 1972.