Bolpur, Kolkata, 11 March : A rural arts and craft complex has come up in Santiniketan, thanks to the Eastern Zonal Cultural Centre (EZCC). Built on a little over eight acres in Sural, on the outskirts of Santiniketan, the complex has been named Shilpagram.
Designed on the lines of a village, Shilpagram has incorporated traditional architectural features of various rural and tribal areas of eastern India. In the complex are huts representing the nine members of
Supported by the Centre's ministry of culture, the complex has been conceived with the primary aim of promoting and marketing authentic rural arts and craft and envisioned as a hub for cultural activities. Shilpagram was inaugurated a few days ago by WB Governor Gopalkrishna Gandhi in the presence of Jawhar Sircar, secretary of the Union ministry of culture.
All units in Shilpagram are connected by a pathway weaving through a landscaped garden, which has an artificial waterfall, a temple, a sculpture garden and a pond.
UNB, Moulvibazar, 11 March : Three railway stations on Sylhet-Akhaura section have been closed for indefinite period due to manpower crisis. As per instruction of the divisional transport officer of Bangladesh Railway, train stations of Tilagaon, Laskarpur and Itakhola have been closed. Another railway station of the section Bhatera has remained open for only eight hours a day. The authorities shut down the activities of the three stations for indefinite period showing manpower crisis.
“We have shortlisted seven names for the two seats in Tripura and decided to form a tie-up with two tribal-based parties,” Arun Chandra Bhowmik, chairman of the Trinamool Congress in Tripura, told journalists Wednesday. The two parties are the Indigenous People’s Front of Tripura (IPFT) and the Nationalist Council of Tripura (NCT).
Elections to the West Tripura and East Tripura constituencies, which are reserved for tribals, would be held 23 April. The Trinamool Congress has already started its election campaign.
130years old Kolkata trams to sport a new look soon
Kolkata, 11 March : Kolkata's trams, that have been plying in the city for over 130 years and are a unique symbol of the city, are set to get a makeover.
Calcutta Tramways Co.(CTC), the century-old company that operates the common man's transport vehicle in this crowded megapolis of 16 million people, said plans have been drawn up to introduce at least 20 modern tramcars soon.
Ever since the first horse-drawn tram of the city rolled out on metre gauge tracks on 24 February, 1873, the 'heritage wheels' have virtually become a logo of Kolkata; a city of over 15 million people. CTC was formed in 1880 and registered in London on 22 December that year. The company was taken over by the West Bengal government in the 1970s.
Two members of the US Federal Bureau of Investigation, described as an 'advance team', arrived in Bangladesh on Sunday, in response to the Bangladesh government's requests for assistance in the investigation. The FBI men spent over two hours Tuesday morning at the border force's Peelkhana headquarters surveying the site of the mutiny.
The US agency has said it will set its terms of reference working with local investigators led by the Criminal Investigation Department.
The length of their stay depends upon their work, says the government, which sought help from both the US Federal Bureau of Investigation and Scotland Yard in the immediate aftermath of the 25-26 February mutiny.
Dhaka, 10 March : Setting an export target of readymade garment (RMG) worth $15-18 billion dollars in next three years, Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) is going to hold its three-day apparel and textile exhibition here on 15 November.
During the last fiscal (2006-07), the sector earned US$ 9.2 billion.
BGMEA President Anwar-Ul-Alam Chowdhury told members of the Overseas Correspondents Association (OCAB) that the exhibition called Batexpo-07, the largest textile fair in the Asia Pacific region, would facilitate foreign buyers to see Bangladeshi textiles, clothing and accessories. (TO READ MORE CLICK)
Howrah, 10 March : How many times have you developed rashes and skin problems after celebrating a colourful Holi? Unfortunately, the colours you've bought for Wednesday's festivities could land you in trouble yet again as they contain lead and cadmium. Blame the sloppy government, which is still "considering" a ban on the use of these deadly ingredients.
"We have done a study on the lead content in colours and sent the report to the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB). We have recommended a ban on colours containing lead and cadmium," said M L Meena, principal secretary, WB state environment department.
Nowhere outside India would you find such random use of lead in colours, fumes Biswajit Mukherjee, chief law officer in the state environment department. "The recommendations sent by our state are being considered by the Union environment ministry which can formulate guidelines for implementation throughout the country," added Meena.
“The state government has already received the revised schedule of the IPL which will be reviewed at a high-level meeting day after tomorrow,” Chief Secretary Asok Mohan Chakraborty said. Convened by the Chief Secretary, the meeting would be attended by state Home Secretary Ardhendu Sen, Sports Secretary KN Behera, DGP AB Vohra and Kolkata Police Commissioner Goutam Mohan Chakraborty.
The city police commissioner told PTI that the meeting would discuss whether the revised schedule would require any changes to the security arrangement.
Seven IPL matches are scheduled for Kolkata. The revised schedule had fixed five matches in April and two in May, instead of three matches in April and four in May in the original schedule, the commissioner said.
The investigation into the BDR mutiny revealed that "some outsiders" had knowledge about the rebellion, a top official of a law enforcement agency said. "We have found involvement of around 450 BDR officials and jawans in the mutiny after scrutinising the video footages and photographs," The Daily Star on Tuesday quoted an investigator as saying.
The official said they are now trying to get details about the 450-odd mutineers by interrogating those who were arrested.
CAG unhappy with Tripura police modernisation drive
Agartala, 10 March : The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) has expressed displeasure over police modernisation initiatives of the Tripura government since 2003 while suggesting to fix up quantifiable targets and specific timeline for filling up the gaps for improvement of weaponry, mobility and communication.
The latest CAG report revealed that inadequate planning resulted in utilisation of only 10-63 per cent of the available funds during 2003-08 and that only one per cent of the Tripura State Rifles (TSR) jawans were trained on counter insurgency and jungle warfare techniques in the last six years due to inadequate infrastructure.
The report also observed that against the projected requirement of arms and ammunition of Rs 44.38 crore for 2003-08 plan, the department had received arms and ammunition worth Rs 3.60 crore through the subsequent annual plans, besides, holding unserviceable arms and ammunition numbering 835 and 22,635 respectively.
It has also underlined that arms and ammunition requirement was not projected as per norms and 12 out of 13 categories of weapons projected in the annual plan were not received during 2003-08 and the shortfall of arms was between 26 and 100 per cent while that of ammunition ranged between 12-73 per cent.
”Most unfortunately, one of the important objectives of improving the striking capability of the police force by providing modern arms and ammunition was only partially met thereby denying the police of the necessary means to combat insurgency and other security threat,” the CAG report mentioned.
”One of the thrust areas of the modernisation is to increase mobility of the state police force to face the challenges for management of internal security where vehicles play a pivotal role but it was found that there was a shortage of 46 per cent vehicles, which affected the mobility of the forces,” the CAG report further underlined.
Kolkata NGO asks Mallya to exhibit Gandhi's items
Kolkata, 10 March : A city NGO has asked industrialist Vijay Mallya, who bought Mahatma Gandhi's personal belongings at a New York auction, to display the items in all state capitals of the country before handing them over to centre.
"The people of our country will get an opportunity to see the personal belongings of the Father of the Nation if those are exhibited for a day or two in all the state capitals after being brought to India," NGO 'Diganta' wrote in a letter to the UB Group chairman.
Gandhi's glasses, sandals, pocket watch, plate and a bowl were put up for auction by a US-based private collector James Otis. Mallya bought them for USD 1.8 million.