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Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Bengal bids farewell to singer Suchitra Mitra with songs, tears..

Kolkata, 4 January : Thousands of mourners joined the funeral procession of legendary Rabindra Sangeet icon Suchitra Mitra singing her favourite numbers following the flower-bedecked hearse through the main thoroughfares of the city before ending at the crematorium today.
The body of the singer, who died yesterday aged 86, was kept at 'Peace Haven' for embalming last evening. It was taken to the ancestral house of the Tagores this morning at Jorasanko in north Kolkata, to Rabindra Sadan, a famed auditorium named after Tagore in central part of the city and to 'Ravitirtha', a music insitution founded by the singer in southern metropolis before the final journey to Keoratala crematorium.
Chief minister Buddhadev Bhattacharjee placed a wreath on the body at Rabindra Sadan where several noted singers, Mitra's students and admirers assembled to pay their respects. Mourners from all walks of life assembled at all the places where the hearse stopped to pay their tearful homage.
Many of them were singing the singer's favourite numbers like "Aguner Parasmani chhoao prane" and "Akash jure suninu oi baje". As the cortege reached the crematorium, many mourners burst into tears. The last rites were performed by the relatives of Mitra as her only son Kunal, who lives in the US, could not arrive to attend the funeral. Photos : Bidhan Bhattacharjee

Tripura launches multi-pronged community policing plan
Agartala, 4 January : Tripura Police Tuesday launched ‘Prayaas’, a multi-pronged community policing scheme, to reach out to the people, root out crime against women and to flush out terrorism.
‘Police would go to people to know and resolve their problems, not the other way round,’ Director General of Police K. Saleem Ali said after state Governor D.Y. Patil formally launched the scheme. ‘Prayaas would deal with militancy, crime against women, road accidents besides general law and order-related problems,’ he said.

Shibpur's BESU and INSDAF tie up for "Steel Research"
Howrah, 4 January : Bengal Engineering and Science University (BESU), Shibpur, today joined hands with Insititute for Skill Development and Growth (INSDAG) for facilitating research on steel under structural and metallurgical engineering.
Jointly addressing the media after inking an MoU in this regard, BESU Vice-Chancellor Prof Ajoy Kumar Ray and INSDAG Director General Sushim Banerjee said a building made up of steel and glass would come up in Kolkata in the next two years that would house various departments conducting training programmes on steel. Sprawled over 1,438 sq metres, the four-storeyed building would entail a cost of Rs 4.5 crore, they informed.
Besides, seminars at the both national and international levels on the alloy would be conducted and arrangements would be made to hold exhibitions in its premises, according to them.
It may be mentioned that INSDAG is a non-profit organisation set up by the Ministry of Steel. Steel makers like SAIL, Tata Steel and JSW feature are among the 400 members attached to the organisations, sources said.

B'desh PM Sheikh Hasina condoles death of Suchitra Mitra
BSS, Dhaka, 4 January : Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today expressed deep shock and sorrows at the death of legendary Indian Rabindra Sangeet singer Suchitra Mitra.
In a message of condolence, she described Suchitra Mitra's death as an irreparable loss for the Bengali culture. The Rabindra Sangeet singers have lost one of their guardians after her death. Sheikh Hasina recalled Ms. Mitra's contribution to flourishing "Rabindra Sangeet" across the world as well as her role in creating mass awareness for Bangladesh during the country's War of Liberation in 1971.

Insurgency still persists in border areas : CM Manik Sarkar
ANI, Agartala, 4 January : Tripura Chief Minister Manik Sarkar has said that although militant activities have been curbed in the state, the problem is yet to be completely uprooted completely.
Inaugurating the Tripura Police Week here on Monday, Manik Sarkar said: "The insurgency problem has not yet been totally uprooted. Though their activities have come down in many states, but still they are very active in many states and across the border they still have their camps; maybe their strength has reduced." He also congratulated the efforts of police officials in effectively combating the insurgency problem in the state, adding that a lot of effort needed to be made to completely wash away the problem.
The state police department has also introduced an SMS-based information sharing method with the help of the National Informatics Centre (NIC) to curb militant activities in the State. Addressing the session, K. Saleem Ali, Director General of Police said that police should act like friends to ensure there is no fear in the mind of people about cops who can be approached for problems. Tripura is the second state in India after Jharkhand to introduce the Geo-Spatial 3D Satellite Imagery System to curb militancy and crime. Photo : Parthajit Dutta

Mamata receives cheques of dividend worth over Rs 311Cr
PTI, New Delhi, 4 January : Railway Minister Mamata Banerjee received cheques of dividend amounting to Rs 311.88 crore for the year 2009-10 from seven Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs) under her Ministry here today.
Chairman and Managing Directors of seven PSUs - Container Corporation of Indian Limited (CONCOR), Indian Railway Finance Corporation (IRFC), IRCON International Limited, Railtel Corporation of India Limited (RCIL), RITES Limited, Indian Railways Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) and Rail Vikas Nigam Limited (RVNL) -- handed over cheques separately to the Railway Minister. Chairman of Railway Board Vivek Sahai and other Board Members were among those present on the occasion.
The dividend amounts paid by respective PSUs are - CONCOR Rs 114.65 crore, IRFC Rs 100 crore, IRCON Rs 36.62 crore, Railtel Rs 15 crore, RITES Rs 23 crore, IRCTC Rs 12.61 crore and RVNL Rs 10 crore.

Azim Gr. ceases operations of sweater units in Chattagong
Fibre2fashion, 4 January : The Azim Group has announced to cease the operations of its four units located at the Kalurghat industrial zone in Chittagong for an indefinite time after the workers resorted to demonstration over the issue of raising the piece rate for manufacturing sweaters.... READ FULL STORY

Woollen garments business booms in Tripura during winter
Pinaki Das, Agartala, 4 January : Woollen garments dealers are doing a brisk business in Agartala as cold wave continues to shiver people in the region.
Scores of people are thronging at the established and makeshift shops of woolen garments for variety of wares. Women traders from other parts of country are also selling wide range of products. Teshi Palmo, a woollen garments trader from Dehradun, said the region that was hit by militancy in the past is peaceful these days and favourable for their business. "We have come all the way from Dehradun to Agartala, Tripura, to do business of these woollen garments. I hope to do good business here...the environment is quite peaceful here," said Palmo.
A good number of traders from Manipur are doing their business here and expecting better turnover. "We visit Tripura every year to do sweater business. This year, now cold waves have started blowing and we are expecting more chilling weather ahead and it will surely increase our sale," S. T. Dolma, a Manipuri trader.

Onion prices to come down soon : FM Pranab Mukherjee
PTI, New Delhi, 4 January : Indian Finance Minister Pranab Mukhrejee today expressed hope that prices of onions, which touched a high of over Rs 80 per kg last month, will soon decline due to measures taken by the government.
"We have already reduced import duty to zero level. Therefore, I do hope some improvement and moderation will take place," Mukherjee told reporters on the sidelines of a conference organised by accounting body ICAI.

Indo-US navy exercise to begin Wednesday
IANS, New Delhi, 4 January : Indian and US navy divers will learn salvage techniques from each other during an eight-day joint exercise beginning Wednesday in the Andaman Sea off Port Blair.
The Indian Navy's survey ship INS Nireekshak, and USS Safeguard, a specialised salvage vessel, would be participating in the 5-12 January exercise, a navy spokesperson said here Tuesday. The drill, named SALVEX, is aimed at "strengthening capability in niche techniques associated with diving and salvage", the spokesperson said.
During the exercise, various specialist salvage techniques will be jointly practised by divers of the two navies. Among the notable salvage techniques to be demonstrated are operation of underwater remotely operated vehicles (ROVs) and side scan sonasrs launched from the USS Safeguard and demonstration of hot tap equipment - used for removing fuel from the tanks of sunken vessels.
During SALVEX, the divers will also hone their salvage skills on a 'mud monster', a pontoon specially built and sunk to practise salvage and diving exercises. The first SALVEX was conducted in 2005 and the series of exercises have been conducted annually thereafter, alternately in India and US locations in the Pacific.
During the first SALVEX, a vintage Indian Navy Sea Hawk fighter was recovered from a depth of about 50 metres off Kochi. Indian Navy salvage teams have in the past also recovered a Seaking helicopter from a depth of 70 metres. INS Nireekshak is the Indian Navy's specialist diving support ship with a capacity to support dives up to 300 metres depth. USS Safeguard is a class auxiliary rescue and salvage ship.
For the current SALVEX, the Indian Navy's team comprises 17 clearance divers, including two officers, The US Navy's team comprises 15 divers, including two officers.
Indian naval divers have time and again demonstrated their professionalism by rescuing men and salvaging material in adverse and treacherous conditions in fast flowing rivers, freezing lakes and ponds and waters with virtually nil visibility.