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Sunday, January 11, 2009

Both Side Of Bengal : Lots Happening On Book Fair

Ekushey Boi Mela 2009 may venture beyond Bangla Academy
Dhaka, 13 January : As much as half of this year's Ekushey Boi Mela 2009 may venture beyond Bangla Academy Boi Mela or '21st Book Fair-2009' may for the first time be located beyond the Dhaka Bangla Academy grounds.
"We are thinking of such a move as there is a space crisis inside Bangla Academy," said the academy's director general Dr Syed Mohammad Shahed. Shahed said they will lose space of around 120 stalls this year due to construction work of a building on the bank of the academy's pond and construction materials lying inside the academy. The 2008 Boi Mela held a total of 373 stalls in the academy grounds. "We have already started working to expand the fair onto the academy's front road, Suhrawardy Uddyan or anywhere else nearby," said the academy boss. He, however, added that no decision has been finalised yet in this regard.
The director general said, in last year that the fair might in future be shifted to Dhaka University's playground or Suhrawardy Uddyan upon gradual expansion of the fair.

Blueprint to control Kolkata book fair traffic
Kolkata, 13 January : The WB state government on Tuesday discussed plans to control traffic at the EM Bypass-Park Circus connector during the Kolkata Book Fair this year.
Several other issues regarding the fair were also discussed at the meeting for which State chief secretary Asok Mohan Chakrabarti, home secretary Ardhendu Sen, and other authorities met at Writers' Buildings.
40 Whiteliners for passengers going to the book fair. Buses will wait at Ultadanga, Tollygunge Metro station, Behala, Taratala, Santragachhi, Esplanade and so on, so that connectivity is not a problem.
The police commissioner had recently written to the home secretary, suggesting several measures to resolve traffic problems. There would be a complete disaster near Parama Island if some steps are not taken immediately.

Rs 4.69 Crore scam at Birbhum District Central Co-operative Bank
Suri, 13 January : A financial scam to the tune of Rs 4.69 crore was unearthed at the Birbhum District Central Co-operative Bank on Tuesday.
The bank management had lodged a complaint with Nalhati police against M Dutta, the manager of Mallarpur branch of the bank. The scam had allegedly taken place in 2005-06 when he was manager of Nalhati branch. Partho Basu, a senior official of the bank, told Bengal News, the manager had granted loans to some persons above the sanctioned amount. Besides, loans were found to have been disbursed in fake names.
Habibul Hossain, the OC of Nalhati police station, said a case has been started. Dutta could not be contacted.

January Warmth may touch 36-yr high
Warmer Weather Conditions Could Ripe Of Virus Attacks
Kolkata, 12 January : The last time that the second week of January went this warm was some 36 years back. 10 January, 1973, still holds the record for the warmest January day in Kolkata at 32.5 °C. This year, the remaining
20 days could well beat the all-time record. And this unusually warm winter may hasten the spread of diseases, warn doctors.
Till Sunday, the maximum temperature hovered around 28 °C and is likely to remain so for the next couple of days. The minimum temperature for the last couple of days has remained at least five degrees above normal. And there's no possibility of any drop soon. Incidentally, the coldest day in recent years was 10 January, 2006, when the temperature went down to 11 °C.
If Sunday was sunny and bright, weather turned gloomier on Monday, with a thick blanket of cloud. Met department officials said rain was unlikely to hit a vast stretch of area, starting from the hills of North Bengal to Gangetic West Bengal. The westerlies so far have shown no indication of moving out from the state. There is no indication from the Met office if winter will return to Kolkata or spring will set in early.
The relatively warmer weather conditions are already ripe for a number of virus attacks, say doctors. Complaints of cough and cold are on the rise, and so is the threat of malaria, with the mosquito population on the rise. With the climatic condition resembling spring, bacteria and viruses that thrive from early February to mid-March have already started making their presence felt. The result: doctors have chicken pox and measles cases.

28 NLFT militants surrender in Tripura
ANI, Agartala, 12 January : Twenty-eight hardcore militants of the outlawed National Liberation Front of Tripura (NLFT) officially laid down arms during a surrender ceremony at the 21 Assam Rifles range head quarters in Agartala with arms and ammunition.
The militants informed that they had fled from their camps in the forest of neighbouring Bangladesh mainly for two reasons - food crisis in Bangladesh camps and non-payment by the leaders of the militant outfits to the down rang cadres.
They also feared that with the forming of the new democratic government in Bangladesh there are every possibility of raids and anti-insurgency operation against Indian militants harboring in Bangladesh.
One of the surrendered militant Gananta Reang (37), a self-styled Major in the NLFT (BM) said, "The area where in Bangladesh we had our camp there were another 21 to 22 more camps. For our need like arms and training we have our contacts in Thailand, Pakistan, Mizoram and also in Bangladesh."
The militants deposited a 7.62 SLR with one Magazine, 303 rifle, one 12 bore gun, four revolvers, grenades, live cartridges, magazine and Bangladeshi currency notes. Today's surrendered has again proved that there are several caps of northeast militants in Bangladesh territory, though that Bangladesh denies it.
Reports say militants belonging to various rebel groups in the northeast have set up about 100 camps and hideouts in different parts of Bangladesh, especially in Sylhet district and Chittagong Hill Tracts.
New B'desh Govt to print extra 70 lakh textbooks
Dhaka, 11 January : The new Bangladesh government on Sunday decided to print another 70 lakh textbooks to be available in the market by 15 January, said a senior education official. The decision came from a meeting of National Curriculum and Textbook Board.
"A total of 70 lakh books that include 14 lakh books on five subjects each will be printed," said additional education secretary Mozammel Haque Khan, who chaired the meeting. "We have ordered 28 publishing houses for printing these books, who we consider as the best on the basis of the job they did for us before," said Khan. "Those who will create any irregularities in releasing books will be dealt with legal actions," education minister Nurul Islam Nahid told reporters while visiting book libraries at Bangla Bazar in the city.

Bangladesh Parliament to convene on January 25
Dhaka, 11 January : Bangladesh President Iajuddin Ahmed summoned the first session of the country's ninth Parliament on 25 January following the swearing-in of Sheikh Hasina-led Government.
"The order of the President has been sent to the Parliament Secretariat. The first session will begin at 3 p.m.BDST on 25 January," a spokesman at the presidential palace said.
The Parliament Secretariat also issued a press release in this regard. Awami League Chief Sheikh Hasina Wajed was sworn in as the new Prime Minister of Bangladesh on Tuesday after her party-led grand alliance swept the general elections a week ago.

Mega Food park in Murshidabad
Spread Over 60 acres, 165 Crore Investment, 50,000 Jobs, Work start by June
Baharampur, 11 January : West Bengal will relish this: its first "Mega Food Park" that promises over 50,000 jobs and will cost Rs 165 crore to build is to come up in Murshidabad's Jangipur, India's external affairs minister Pranab Mukherjee's parliamentary constituency.
The site of the park, to be spread over nearly 60 acres. The public-private venture will have five nodal centres or sub-centres, primarily to ensure uninterrupted supplies to markets. WB's Food Processing and Horticulture Development Corporation will invest in the park, as will the Indian Warehousing Corporation. Private partners will be selected later. Approval from the Centre, which will provide a Rs 50-crore grant, came this week. Officials said work could begin as early as June.
"The central food processing industries department's approval came this week and the West Bengal government is looking for a plot in Jangipur. The park will be a major boost to the region," said an official of the state food processing department.
"With its sub-centres and tertiary (ancillary) units around the site, the park should generate employment for over 50,000 people directly and indirectly," said Murshidabad district magistrate Parwez Ahmad Siddiqui.
The park will mainly process rice, potatoes, mango, pineapple and vegetables. Siddiqui said the sub-centres would come up in Beldanga (Murshidabad), Katwa (Burdwan), Ayushpur (Burdwan), Rampurhat (Birbhum) and Kaliachak (Malda). Other officials said they would "like to see" the work start by June.
The government expects the project to not only open up new vistas in Bengal's food processing industry but also lead to economic development in Jangipur and in areas near the sub-centres. "The mega food park will will bring about all-round development in and around Jangipur and the sub-centres. Numerous ancillary and tertiary units should also come up," said a senior official of the state agriculture department.

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