"In our state, the EPIC has been issued to 97.4 percent of electors and they should produce their cards before the polling officials while casting their votes,"
West Bengal chief electoral officer (CEO) Sunil Gupta said, adding a recent Election Commission order has made this mandatory.
"However, the voters who don't have an EPIC can use the voter's slip with photograph issued by the EC, but these need to attested by the election officials," he told mediapersons.
"If the voters' slip doesn't have a photo then the voter can opt for 13 other identification documents prescribed by the election commission" Gupta said. The alternative identification documents include PAN (permanent account number) card, driving license card, passport, rural employment guarantee job card, property documents and so on.
UNB, Dhaka, 28 March : Bangladesh Permanent Representative to the UN, Dr Momen and his wife hosted a reception Monday evening at the Permanent Mission of Bangladesh on the occasion of the 41st Independence and National Day of the country.
UN Secretary General, Ban Ki moon accompanied by his wife joined the reception. During the reception, UN Secretary General Ban Ki moon, A H Mahmud Ali MP and Permanent Representative to the UN, Dr Momen cut a cake together marking the Day, according to a press release received here today(Tuesday).
Among others, Permanent Representatives of the UK, Japan, Turkey, Luxembourg, Egypt, Singapore, India, Pakistan along with NAM countries, G-77 and China, LDCs and African countries to the UN attended the reception to express their solidarity for Bangladesh and Bangladeshi people.
A large number of representatives from the International media also attended the reception. The reception was also attended by the Bangladeshi valiant freedom fighters, journalists and distinguished expatriates living in the US.
IANS, Kolkata, 28 March : Ahead of the April-May West Bengal assembly elections, three state officers, including a deputy inspector general of police, have been transferred on the Election Commission's instructions, Chief Secretary Samar Ghosh said Monday.
Malda District Magistrate Promal Samanta, East Midnapore Superintendent of Police Ajit Sarkar and Deputy Inspector General of Police (Mindapore range) Anil Kumar were transferred. They would be replaced by Rajesh Singh, K. Jayraman and Vineet Goyel respectively. Both Vineet Goyel and Neeraj Singh were posted in Kolkata Police as Joint Commissioner (Traffic) and Joint Commissioner (Administration) respectively.
Ghosh said at the state secretariat - Writers' Buildings - in the evening that Neeraj Singh will take charge as Deputy Inspector general of Police (Murshidabad range).
PTI, Guwahati, 28 March : Union Finance Minister and senior Congress leader Pranab Mukherjee today hoped for the success of his party's alliance with Trinamool Congress for the upcoming West Bengal Assembly polls.
"When we enter into alliance with any party at the state level, we ensure that it will be beneficial for both and on same grounds we agreed to have seat-adjustment with Trinamool Congress," Mukherjee who arrived in the state tonight, told reporters here.
"We believe that Trinamool is more powerful than us in West Bengal and there we entered into an agreement with them and it is only in the level of adjustment of seats," Mukherjee said.
Kolkata, 28 March : A Druk airways flight carrying the prince of Bhutan was diverted to Kolkata airport this afternoon due to bad weather at Paro in Bhutan where it was scheduled to land.
The flight was going to Paro from Bangladesh, officials said. It was diverted when it was found that the weather at the destination airport was very bad, they said. The flight will leave for Paro tomorrow, airport sources said.
PTI, Shillong, 28 March : The North-East will have 5,000 MW of power available for consumption by 2014, Power Grid Corporation of India's CMD S K Chaturvedi said today.
Although known to be a potential powerhouse, the region's peak demand is now 2,100 MW, but its own generation is only about 900 MW. "About 1,200 MW is being transmitted to the region by Power Grid currently," Chaturvedi said, adding that four key projects coming up in the region would be onstream by 2013-14.
"The 740-MW Palatana thermal project executed by ONGC in Tripura and NTPC's Bongaigaon Thermal Power Station (750 MW) would be exclusively for the region.
The Palatana project should be commissioned by end of this year or early next year," he said on the sidelines of the IIM Shillong convocation here.
UNB, Dhaka, 28 March : Bangladesh is going to send various materials including medicines tomorrow for Japanese people who recently have been affected by serious earthquake and tsunami.
The materials are being sent as a sign of Bangladesh’s deep friendship with Japan following directive by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, said her Press Secretary Abul Kalam Azad. The Press Secretary said an Air Force aircraft carrying the materials will fly for Japan in the morning.
Kolkata, 28 March : The Calcutta High Court on Monday directed the Archaeological Survey of India to form an expert committee to examine the authenticity of 20 paintings, purported to be works of Rabindranath Tagore, which ran into controversy after they were labelled "fake" by art experts.
A division bench comprising Chief Justice J N Patel and Justice Asim Kumar Roy directed the Director General of ASI to complete the tests to ascertain the authenticity of the paintings and submit a report to the court within three months.
Sculptor Tapas Sarkar had filed a petition before the High Court seeking formation of an expert committee by a competent authority to unravel the truth behind allegations of the "fake" Tagore paintings exhibited at the Government Art College gallery between 27 February and 8 March to mark the 150th birth anniversary of the Nobel laureate.
IANS, New Delhi, 28 March : It was a big challenge for forest officials to count tigers in the Sunderbans mangroves, which has reported 70 out of a total of 1,706 tigers in India in the latest census released Monday.
The West Bengal delta was included in the census for the first time this year. ‘Sunderbans was the biggest challenge for tiger census due to its vast area and difficult approach,’ Environment Minister Jairam said while releasing the tiger population figures here.
The tiger estimation in the world’s largest river delta, which is inside the tidal zone, was done using satellite telemetry and sign surveys.
‘Sunderbans has highest tiger density in the world of 19-20 tigers per sq km while the prey availability is poor,’ said Y.V. Jhala, scientist from the Wildlife Institute of India, which led the census.
The census was also conducted in four of the five tiger reserves in Maoist-affected states in the country. The census recorded an increase in tiger figures to 1,706 in 2010, compared to 1,411 in 2006 when the last counting was done.
The Sundarbans consists of around 10,200 sq km of mangrove forest spread over India and Bangladesh. It is the largest mangrove forest in the world. The total area of the Sundarbans region in India is around 9,600 sq km, which constitutes the Sundarbans Biosphere Reserve. It is bordered on the west by the Muriganga river and on the east by the Harinbhahga and Raimangal rivers. The other major rivers flowing through this highly sensitive eco-system are Saptamukhi, Thakuran, Matla and Goasaba. န Photo : PTI
PTI, Itanagar, 28 March : A villager of Lil Village in Kurung Kumey district has rescued two Clouded Leopard cubs from a nearby jungle and handed them over to the state zoo authority here.
Zoo sources said today that Y Taya, the villager found the cubs, about 15 days old, roaming in the jungle yesterday. Their mother is believed to have died or may have abandoned them.
UNB, Chittagong, Dhaka, 28 March : Bangladesh government should build an alternative seaport at Sangu in the Bay to safeguard Chittagong Port from natural disasters like tsunami and spur industrial growth in Sitakundu and Mirersharai, experts said Sunday.
Former energy secretary Nasir Uddin said a massive disaster like tsunami that battered Japan early this month could render Chittagong port useless for months, crippling the country's economy.
"Chittagong Port handles some 90 per cent of the country's export and import. This over-dependence is a burden. If a big natural disaster hits the port, its ripple-effect can paralyse the country's entire economy," he said. "To minimise the risk, we need an alternative port so that even if Chittagong port is hit by a tsunami or a quake, we can keep the other port open for business," he said.
He suggested setting up the port at Sangu point, close to a Cairn-found offshore gas-field. Indian industrial conglomerate Tata Group wanted to build a port at this point to anchor big vessels, he said.
He said the alternative port would also boost industrial growth in Sitakundu and Mirersharai - the gateway to Chittagong city - which have recently emerged as the country's key heavy-industry zones. He was speaking at a seminar on safe port issues in the context of Chittagong port. Sangu is located some 20 kilometres of north of Chittagong port.
Nasir Uddin who was a member of the planning commission said: "We've to learn from the experiences of Japan and make the Chittagong port risk-free at any cost. It's the single most important infrastructure of our economy."