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Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Indian economy grows by impressive 8.8 percent in April-June

PTI, New Delhi, 31 August : Economy grew by an impressive 8.8 percent during the quarter ended June on the back of robust manufacturing growth.
However, certain sectors like financial services restrained the growth in economy, which had recorded 6 per cent growth rate in April-June 2009-10. Agriculture and allied activities grew by 2.8%, higher than 1.9% in the year-ago period, but it is nowhere between the target of four per cent pegged by the government in the medium term.
Manufacturing expanded by strong 12.4% in April-June, 2010 against a mere 3.8% growth rate in the same period last year. Construction too grew by 7.5 percent compared to 4.6 percent. Among services, financial, insurance and real estate services expanded by just 8 percent, against a growth rate of 11. READ BBC STORY

Economy will grow not less than 8.5 pc in FY'11 : Pranab
PTI, New Delhi, 31 August : Buoyed by the encouraging first quarter GDP numbers, Indian Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee today expressed confidence that the economy will grow by not less than 8.50-8.75% this fiscal.
"The numbers are quite encouraging ... more encouraging point is 12.4 percent growth which has been registered in the manufacturing sector. I think the highest growth rate in the last 11 quarters ... I do hope it will be possible to maintain this level of growth," Mukherjee told reporters here.

Militants threaten to blow up KPIs, attack judges, lawyers, police if their 4 leaders not freed
UNB, Dhaka, 31 August : Bangladeshi militants have threatened to blow up important establishments as well as carry out simultaneous attacks on judges, lawyers and police if what they called their four ‘national leaders’ are not freed within the Eid.
The unidentified militant outfit under the banner of ”M.D.M.T” sent an email containing the threat to the Law Commission on 25 August. However, the email did not mention the names of their four national leaders. The Registrar of the International Crimes Tribunal Shahinur Islam told UNB that the Law Commission got the email when it opened it today. He said the police was informed of the matter.
Officer-in-charge of Shahbagh police station Rezaul Karim said he registered a general diary with his police station Tuesday noon. Investigation began to trace out the e-mail senders, he said, adding security which is already in place is enough for ensuring the security of the Supreme Court compound.
One more Maoist surrenders before the police in Jhargram
Jhargram, 31 August : With one more Maoist today surrendering before the police in Jhargram sub-division in West Midnapore district, the total number of Maoists who gave up arms in the state has gone to three in the past one week.
Bibhuti Mahato, a member of the Madan Mahato squad mainly operating in Belpahari and Banspahari area of Jhargram sub-division, surrendered with a single barrel gun before Jhargram's Superintendent of Police Praveen Tripathi.

Asian Development Bank loan for B'desh-India power link
Reuters, Dhaka, 31 August : The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved a $100 million for a cross-border electricity initiative between Bangladesh and India that will provide impetus for increased power trading in South Asia.
The funds will be used to build a 40 km 400 kilovolt transmission line, along with a high voltage direct current substation and connecting loop, linking the western electrical grid of Bangladesh with India's eastern grid, the ADB said in a statement on Tuesday. Around 500 megawatts of power are expected to flow into Bangladesh by 2012 as a result of the project, with the possibility of more in the future.

Maoists kill school teacher at a school building in Jhargram
ANI, Jhargram, 31 August : Armed Maoists shot dead a school teacher in Jhargram region on Monday. It has been reported that at least 40 Maoists rounded a school building and fired at Jahar Chalak, who was sleeping on the rooftop.
The relatives of the deceased teacher said he was a member of the CPI(M) political outfit. “Maoists came at around 1am last night and fired some shots. My uncle was sleeping on the roof of the school. When he stood up to see what was happening, the Maoists fired at him and killed him,” said Achinta Chalak, nephew of Jahar Chalak. “The villagers came shouting and running towards the school building. On seeing the villagers, the Maoists escaped.” he added.
The relatives further said the ultras had threatened Jahar Chalak several times earlier due to which he used to keep hiding in the school where he used to teach. An investigation is underway with regard to the killing.

Wanted Maoist arrested in Lalgarh area of West Midnapore
Jhargram, 31 August : Security forces today arrested a Maoist wanted in about eleven criminal cases in Lalgarh area of the West Midnapore district.
CRPF troops apprehended Vibhuti Mahto, a member of the People's Committee against Police Atrocities (PCPA), from Belpahari area of the district, officials said. Mahto has eleven cases registered against him related to loot, murder and dacoity. A pistol was recovered from his possession and the police are interrogating him, they said.

Appejay Logistics to invest Rs 200 crore at Haldia by 2015
Kolkata, 31 August : Apeejay Logistics Park, a 100 per cent subsidiary of Apeejay Infralogistics, will be investing Rs 200 crore at Haldia by 2015.
The first phase has been completed, chairman Apeejay Surrendra group, Karan Paul said. The logistics park would house state-of-the-art warehouse for specialized and break bulk containerised cargo, truck terminal, light processing units, administrative blocks, offices, and residential areas, apart from food courts.

BD committee expresses disappointment with leased out tea garden lands
BSS, Dhaka, 31 August : Bangladesh parliamentary standing committee on Land Ministry today suggested an extensive investigation on irregularities with the leasing out of lands for tea gardens, a Jatiya Sangsad statement said here today.
It said the committee in a meeting presided over by its chairman A.K.M Mozammel Haque suggested formation of a three- member committee comprising two land ministry officials and a Tea Board representative to investigate into the irregularities. The meeting decided that the investigation committee would visit the areas leased out for tea gardens and capture video pictures to record the irregularities, the statement said.
"The standing committee took the resolution as State Minister for Land Mostafizur Rahman described his personal experience about the irregularities saying a large number of plots allocated for tea gardens remained unused or being used for other purposes," an official familiar with the meeting told BSS. The decision came weeks after Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina herself expressed her dissatisfaction about the irregularities with the tea garden plots.


Monday, August 30, 2010

Introduce special rules in examinations for children with autism

UNB, Dhaka, 30 August : Bangladesh's renowned school psychologist Saima Wazed Hossain requested the Education Ministry to introduce special rules and regulations particularly in examinations for children with autism and other mental and physical challenges.
She said these special children needs flexible rules to appear in examinations and pass the academic hurdles. “Children with special needs have to be facilitated with special education laws.” Saima Wazed, member of US National Association of School Psychologists (UNASP,) came up with the suggestions during a meeting on the sideline of her visit to ‘Proyash’, a school of the children with special needs at the Dhaka Cantonment.
Teachers and other staffs of the school shared their experiences and views with Saima, the school psychologist, who is the daughter of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
On relaxed examination rules for these special children, Saima said there are many special children who cannot stay in seat for long and need breaks amid the hours-long examination while there are many others who write very slowly in comparison with the general children.

No spl tax status for women, rebate for sr citizens in India
PTI, New Delhi, 30 August : While senior citizens will continue to enjoy greater tax exemption, women tax payers will lose their special status under the proposed Direct Taxes Code.
The Bill proposes to raise the tax exemption limit for senior citizens above 65 years to Rs 2.5 lakh per annum from Rs 2.4 lakh at present. The income tax exemption limit for general tax payers has been proposed at Rs 2 lakh, up from Rs 1.6 lakh at present.

BPDB & NTPC sign MoU for development of power sector
BSS, New Delhi, 30 August : The Bangladesh Power Development Board (BPDB) and the Indian state-run National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) signed here today a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for improving power stations in Bangladesh.
The NTPC, as government utility of India, as per the MoU will assess the feasibility of establishing coal-based power stations in Bangladesh. It will also make endeavour to improve human resources through training and development and look into the possibilities for developing power generations projects especially one coal-based project in Joint Venture.
Abul Quasem,Chief Engineer (generation) of BPDB and A K Sharma, General Manager, of NTPC signed the MoU on behalf of their respective organizations at the NTPC Bhawan here this morning.

Delhi-Howrah Rajdhani engine derails,sabotage suspected
Kolkata, 30 August : Passengers aboard the New Delhi-Howrah Rajdhani Express had a narrow escape Monday when two front wheels of the train's engine derailed on the Howrah-Burdwan cord line at Baruipara in Hooghly district. An Eastern Railway spokesperson said sabotage could not be ruled out.
No casualties were reported. "Two front wheels of the engine derailed around 9.25 am near Baruipara station. None of the coaches derailed," Eastern Railway's CPRO Dr Samir Goswami told Bengal Newz.
Quoting preliminary information, Dr Goswami said: "Three hundred pandrol clips (used to fix the rail firmly to the sleeper) were found removed. We suspect these were removed before the train passed the stretch. However, only a probe can confirm our suspicion". "So, sabotage cannot be ruled out at least at this moment," he said. A relief train and an empty EMU (electrical multiple unit) train have been sent to the spot to bring the stranded passengers to Howrah.

Cabinet congratulates Hasina for being among 10 top women leaders of d world
BSS, Dhaka, 30 August : Bangladesh cabinet at its regular meeting today congratulated Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on her placement in the list of 10 top women leaders of the world prepared by internationally reputed Time magazine.
The list was published in the current week's online edition of the magazine.

Tripura to boost tea cultivation through NREGA scheme
Agartala, 30 August : The Tripura Government has initiated a new project of tea cultivation by creating man-days under the NREGA scheme.
"We want to create man-days by creating permanent assets and this project of tea plantation is one of them,"said Tripura Industries&Commerce Minister Jitendra Chowdhury after inaugurating a project at Kalkrisnanagar Gaonsabha area in West Tripura district. "Small tea planters would have to surge forward towards better stabilisation of their economic stature,"he said and added no land can remain vacant in the state without producing anything.
A target of 1 lakh tea plants was taken by the Tripura Tea Development Corporation (TTDC) during the last financial year and tea plants have been brought up with an expense of over Rs 12 lakh, sources said adding these plants will be given to 15 small tea planters at Kalkrishnanagar for cultivation.

Hasan Mahmud Khandaker new police chief of Bangladesh
BSS, Dhaka, 30 August : Bangladesh government today appointed elite-anticrime Rapid Action Battalion's (RAB) director general Hasan Mahmud Khandaker as the country's new police chief.
"Hassan Mahmood Khandker has been appointed as the new Inspector General of Police," a home ministry spokesman told BSS. He said the service of Khandker's predecessor Nur Mohammad, who served as the police chief for the past three and half years, was placed under the foreign ministry for a subsequent diplomatic assignment abroad.

Nicole Tamang declared absconder, GJM withdraws strike
PTI, Darjeeling, 30 August : The main suspect behind the 21 May killing of Gorkha leader Madan Tamang in the town was today declared an absconder by a Darjeeling court.
Nicole Tamang, who escaped from the custody of the CID from Pintail village near Siliguri on 22 August, was among the 30 named in the chargesheet filed by the investigating agency in the court of Chief Judicial Magistrate H Rashid here. The Gorkha Janmukti Morcha, meanwhile, withdrew an indefinite strike called in Darjeeling from today to press for Nicole's production in the court in view of the tripartite talks with the Centre and West Bengal government on 7 September.
The decision was announced by GJM General Secretary Roshan Giri here after a meeting with Darjeeling District Magistrate and Superintendent of Police Devendra Pratap Singh.

Bangladesh, China discuss road link
Dhaka, 30 August : China is ready to sign a pact with Bangladesh on a road link via Myanmar, a visiting Chinese official has said.
China had expressed its support to build a 111-km road covering the three nations in March this year. It will link the southern Yunnan province with Bangladesh via Myanmar. Qin Guangrong, governor of Yunnan province, told Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Sunday that China was ready to sign memorandums of understanding (MoUs) with Bangladesh on road and rail communications.
The official is on a two-day visit to the country following an invitation from the prime minister during her visit to China in March this year. She had discussed the project with Chinese officials during her visit.

Tripura filmmaker seeks justice from Chief Justice Kapadia
UNI, Agartala, 30 August : A young filmmaker of Tripura has sought the intervention of Chief Justice SH Kapadia against alleged corrupt practices of Doordashan Kendras (DDKs) in Northeastern states.
In a complaint to Mr Kapadia, an emerging film talent of the region Sanjib Das, based in Agartala, alleged that DDK authority had appointed unprofessional and untrained personalities for commissioned programmes depriving genuine film producers. Das, a recognised filmmaker of the Mumbai International Film Festival pointed out that as per the Prasar Bharati guidelines, 75% of the total programmes would be commissioned from people of the Northeastern states, while only 11 out of the 40 empanelled producers were from the region.
''I applied for Direct Assignment as an Eminent Producer/Director of Tripura in July as per the advertisement but DDK Agartala did not receive my proposal because I am not empanelled. However, I have come to know that no applications are being entertained at present by DDK authority,'' Das mentioned.
According to report, the main objective of Commissioned Programme was to offer opportunity to the regional talent of North East to promote and provide a platform to deserving Producers/Artists, but there were allegations of malpractices in DDK programme distribution.


Sunday, August 29, 2010

15 killed, 25 injured after minibus falls into pond in Coochbehar

PTI, Coochbehar, 29 August : At least 15 people were killed and 25 others injured when a minibus in which they were travelling overturned and fell into a pond at Dewanhat in Coochbehar district today.
Fifteen bodies were brought out from the submerged bus and taken to the morgues in MJN Hospital and Dinhata Sub- Divisional Hospital for postmortem, police said. The vehicle was later hauled up from water with the help of a crane as fire brigade, disaster management and police personnel joined rescue work along with locals.
Police resorted to mild lathicharge to disperse a mob which damaged a police van near the block hospital at Dewanhat to protest the alleged delay in treating the injured. Locals alleged tear gas shells were also burst but this was denied by authorities. Four of the 25 injured had to be shifted to MJN Hospital. Photos : PTI
Maoists call bandh in 3 dists in Jangalmahal area tomorrow
Purulia, 29 August : Maoists have given a call for a 24-hour bandh in Purulia and Jangalmahal area of Bankura and West Midnapore districts tomorrow to protest the killing of a top Peoples Committee Against Police Atrocities (PCPA) leader Umakanta Mahato.
To enforce the bandh call, Maoists stormed into Urmi station, 20 km from here, yesterday and threatened that Railway property would be targetted if trains functioned on the section during the bandh, station manager Bimal Kumar Ghosh told newsmen. They also pasted posters on the station walls, he said.
PCPA leader Umakanta Mahato, carrying a reward of Rs one lakh on his head and a prime suspect in the Jnaneswari train mishap case, was killed in an encounter with the joint forces at Mohanpur near Lodhasuli jungle in West Midnapore district on 27 August. File Photos : PTI

'Mamatas statement on Azad's killing justified' says Pranab
Kolkata, 29 August : Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee facing flak from the Opposition for her statement on the killing of Maoist leader Cherakuri Rajkumar alias Azad, today received support from Union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee who found "nothing wrong" with it.
When asked at Kolkata Press Club today, whether Banerjee, being part of the UPA government, was unjustified in saying that the killing of Azad was not correct at a public meeting, Mukherjee said, "I don't think so. We had a detailed discussion with the Prime Minister, Home Minister and Mamata Banerjee and she has explained her position. She has said if Azad was killed because of the fact that he was trying to initiate talks with the Centre then that should be explained."

Bangladesh would be developed country many years back
Had Bangabandhu’s programmes implemented : President
Dhaka, 29 August : Bangladesh President Zillur Rahman on Sunday said Bangladesh would have become a developed country like Singapore and Malaysia many years back if there was continuation of the implementation of Bangabandhu’s dream and programmes.
The President made the remark while addressing a function, titled `The Bangabandhu Memorial Lecture’, at Osmani Memorial Auditorium, which was organized by Bangladesh Foundation for Development Research. Former West Bengal Chief Minister Siddhartha Shankar Roy, was scheduled to deliver the memorial lecture but could not attend the function due to illness. However, his address recorded in DVD was presented at the function.

India government declares Tripura as malaria drug resistant
Agartala, 29 August : Indian Health Ministry has declared all the four districts of Tripura as malaria drug resistant and suggested to administer second generation drug to fight against Plasmodium Falciparum.
According to report, alarmed at the increasing incidences of malaria death in Tripura National Vector Borne Disease Control Programme (NVBDC) had conducted a comprehensive study in malaria prone areas on effectiveness of conventional medicines for malaria treatment in 2007 and with the report of NVBDC Central Drug Research Institute (CDRI) categorised the state as Chloroquine (malaria drug) resistant.

Accordingly, the ministry had distributed 1.66 lakhs mosquito nets in worst affected locations of the state in 2009-10 while more than Rs 10 Crore was spent for precautionary measures and awareness generation in past four years, officials stated.
Maoist arms suppliers held from Chatna in Bankura district
IANS, Kolkata, 29 August : Two arms suppliers who allegedly catered to the Maoists were arrested early Sunday from Bankura district, police said.
Biswanath Mondal and Sheikh Amjad were arrested from Bankura district’s Chatna area. “We have arrested two arms suppliers from Chatna area early Sunday,” Bankura Superintendent of Police Pranab Kumar told IANS over phone. Fifteen gelatin sticks and 20 detonators were recovered from them, he said.
35,000 MW power to be proudced by 2020 : S Banerjee
UNI, Indore (MP), 29 August : Chairman of Indian Atomic Energy Commission and Secretary Department of Atomic Energy (DAE), Srikumar Banerjee said that the commission has set a target of producing 35,000 MW electricity by 2020.
''At present 4,500 MW electricity are being produced by nuclear plants and two new units will be ready in two years from where another 7,500 MW power will be available,'' Dr Banerjee told media here.
Six killed, 30+ injured in road crash
UNB, Jhenidah, 29 August : At least six people were killed and over 30 others injured as a bus overturned at Kanthaltola on Jessore-Chuadanga road in Moheshpur upazila here Sunday morning.
The identities of the deceased could not be known immediately. Witnesses said a Jessore bound speedy bus turned turtle after hitting a log that fell on the road from a logs-laden van, leaving four people dead on the spot. Two other passengers died at hospital.
The injured were rushed to Jibannagar Hospital and Moheshpur upazila health complex. Among the injured, condition of four people was stated to be critical.
"NBPTOCC" calls for indefinite strike from 31st August
Jalpaiguri, 29 August : The North Bengal Passenger Transport Owners Coordination Committee (NBPTOCC) today announced an indefinite strike from Tuesday in Jalpaiguri and CoochBehar district and Siliguri sub-division of Darjeeling district.
The secretary of the NBPTOCC, Pranab Mani told a press conference here that the indefinite strike has been called to protest the bad condition of roads especially the NH 31 in the three districts. No buses would ply in the three districts during the strike, Mani claimed. The condition of the roads especially the NH 31 in the three districts is miserable, he claimed.
Natl Food Composition Database prepared for Bangladesh
UNB, Dhaka, 29 August : A food composition database has been prepared for Bangladesh after extensive research on 75 local foods that will help develop a comprehensive National Food Composition Database (NFCD).
A total of 23 nutrients - macro-nutrients, micro-nutrients and anti-nutrients - of the 75 selected foods including 25 ethnic tribal foods were analyzed during the research. The nutrients and anti-nutrients studied were protein, fat, carbohydrate, energy, moisture, fatty acids, crude fiber, ash, dietary fiber, carotenoids, beta carotene (Vitamin A), Vitamin C, minerals (copper, zinc, iron, manganese, calcium, magnesium sodium, potassium and phosphorous), and anti-nutrient phytate.

A 15-member high profile research team, led by Prof Dr Sheikh Nazrul Islam of Institute of Nutrition and Food Science (INFS), Dhaka University, as principal investigator, carried out the extensive research works from November 2008 to 20 August 2010.
The objectives of the research study, titled `Preparation of Food Composition Database with Special Reference to Indigenous and Ethnic Foods’, included identifying the most frequently consumed foods of the local or indigenous and ethnic people of Bangladesh through Comprehensive Food Consumption Survey. The study objectives also included preparing a key food list that contributes 75 percent of any one nutrient need and providing recommendations for food policy programme planning in the country.
The research was supported by FAO-NFPCSP funded by European Commission and USAID. The 75 foods items under study were selected from 136 foods by comprehensive food consumption survey (CFCS) and Focus Group Discussion (FCD). Foods consumed by 5 percent or more than 5 percent households were selected in the study.


Saturday, August 28, 2010

Pranab confident of economy clocking over 8.5 per cent growth

PTI, New Delhi, 28 August : Indian Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee on Saturday exuded confidence that the economy would grow by more than 8.5% this fiscal, despite partial roll back of stimulus measures.
Addressing heads of Indian Missions here, Mukherjee said the economy is likely to continue the high growth trajectory in the coming years as well. Indian economic growth slowed down to 6.7% during 2008-09 from nine percent in the previous three years after the deepening global financial crisis hit the economy.
To blunt the impact of global crisis, the Government provided stimulus to the economy by cutting taxes and stepping up public expenditure. This catapulted economic growth to 7.4% last fiscal, despite just 0.2% farm growth because of drought in many parts of the country. In fact, the Finance Minister expressed confidence that the economy would grow faster than 8.5%.

PM asks recommendations for framing vested property act
BSS, Dhaka, 28 August : Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today called upon the Hindu religious leaders to send common recommendations for framing the vested property act, saying that it would help passage of the bill in the Jatiya Sangsad. Mentioning various government steps for the vested property act, PM said the bill is now with the concerned parliamentary standing committee for its consideration.
The Prime Minister said this when leaders of Dhaka and Chittagong of Bangladesh Puja Udjapon Parishad and Janmashtami Udjapon Parishad called on her to exchange Janmashtami greetings at Ganobhaban.
West Bengal needs more industries, says CM Buddhadeb
Jagatballavpur, 28 August : West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee today said that after achieving success in agriculture, the state now needs to pay more attention to developing industries.
"We need more industries and factories in the state to provide employment to the unemployed youths and those passing out from the different engineering colleges," Bhattacharjee said while inaugurating a rolling mills cluster set up by the Howrah Chamber of Commerce and Industry at Gumadangi in Howrah district.
India's best Rugby Championship begins at CCFC grounds
IBNS, Kolkata, 28 August : India's top twelve teams on Saturday assembled here to vie for the 77th Royal Challenge All India & South East Asia Rugby Championship, the best known tournament India hosts in Rugby Football.
Chennai Cheetahs take on Kolkata Police and defending champions Red Army play against local Jungle Crows as the kicks off for the eight-day knock out competition begins at 3.00pm at CCFC Grounds on Saturday. The Sports Authorities of India will also host two games of the championship. Besides these four clubs, Army Green, Bangalore, Bombay Gymkhana, Delhi Lioans, Delhi Hurricanes, Tamil Nadu Police are participating. Kolkata has the largest numbers of four participanting clubs in the competition.
No foreign teams are taking part this year as all Commonwealth nations members are taking part in CWG in New Delhi. The CWG's regulating authority has banned all top players to take part in club level tournament to avoid injujry.

Anti-liberation force killed Bangabandhu: Mosharraf Hosain
UNB, Dhaka, 28 August : Bangladesh Labour and Employment Minister Eng Mosharraf Hossain Saturday said that the anti-liberation force, who could not accept country’s independence, killed Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
“This anti-liberation force is still active for jeopardizing country’s sovereignty and we must be aware about them,” he said at National Museum auditorium in the city. Grater Faridpur Employers’ Welfare Association organized the discussion marking the 35th day of martyrdom of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
Mosharraf said when Bangabandhu had been trying to rebuild the war-ravaged country, the vested quarter stopped the country’s development by killing him.
50% seats in AMC & N-Panchayats reserved for women
Agartala, 28 August : The Left Front government in Tripura has decided to reserve 50% seats for women in the civic bodies including the Agartala Municipal Council (AMC) and the 15 nagar panchayats, official sources said today.
Joint Electoral Officer D K Roy said a draft notification issued by the state election commission recently stated that 112 of the 230 seats of the AMC and 15 nagar panchayats will be reserved for women in the elections, tentatively due in December. Voters and political parties can file claims and objections till 31 August, which will be settled on 6 September and after that a final notification would be published, he said. Haripada Das, the office secretary of the CPI(M), said his party believed in empowering women in the state and the decision for reserving seats for women was timely.
Singur's farmers in a spot over unplanned land acquisition
ANI, Singur, 28 August : Farmers, who gave up their lands for the small-car manufacturing project of Tata Motors in West Bengal's Singur town, are now suffering the fallout of unplanned land acquisition.
As a part of the drive to acquire land, farmers were promised jobs in the unit. But now that factory production is stalled and the unit itself lies incomplete, the former farmers are being refused employment with the company, in spite of the fact that they even got training for the same.
Now, villagers of Singur say that the acquisition process could have been carried out in a more planned, negotiated and amicable manner if the authorities had shown a little foresight. File Photo

Meeting to resolve Assam-Arunachal Pradesh border row
ANI, Dispur, 28 August : A high-level meeting of officials from Assam and Arunachal Pradesh was held to resolve the tension prevailing in the Charaipung area along Assam-Arunachal Pradesh (AP) border.
During the meeting, it was decided that the bunkers erected by the Arunachal Pradesh police in the area between Charaipung and the Teok River would be removed immediately. "Arunachal Pradesh has sent a delegation to Guwahati to meet our counterpart government of Assam, to discuss and make efforts to neutralise the situation at Charaipung, which is affecting the normal life of the common people," Setong Sena, Finance Minister of Arunachal Pradesh said on Friday. The Revenue Minister of Assam, Bhumidhar Barman, urged to the media to cooperate in bringing back normalcy to the area.

CPM called bandh hits South Kolkata, normal life disrupted
Kolkata, 28 August : Normal life was disrupted in large parts of south Kolkata today due to a strike called by the CPI(M) to protest an alleged attack on their activists by the Trinamool Congress.
Office-goers had a trying time commuting as transport was seriously affected in large areas of south Kolkata. Shops, markets and business establishments remained closed at Santoshpur, Baghajatin, and some parts of Kasba area, officials said. No untoward incident has been reported so far, police said.
At least 22 people, including a CPI(M) MLA and a Trinamool Congress councillor, were yesterday injured in a clash during a borough election under Kolkata Corporation at Baghajatin, which falls under the chief minister's assembly constituency. Photo : Indrajit Dutta

'Low carbon fair' in Meghalaya to commemorate CWG
PTI, Shillong, 28 August : In order to commemorate the upcoming Commonwealth Games in the national capital, a week-long 'low carbon fair' is being held here from today.
Several activities promoting low carbon practices will be held during the initiative being organised by environment forum CMS Vatavaran in collaboration with the CWG's organising committee. Seminars, workshops, open forum and panel discussions on several contemporary issues related to environment, climate change, sustainable technology and eco-tourism will be held till 3 September, an official release said.

Experts prefer 'monorail' instead of 'metro rail' in Dhaka city
BSS, Dhaka, 28 August : Foreign Transport experts prefer construction of monorail instead of underground metro rail for Dhaka city as the subways will be less feasible and will cost one billion dollar more than the sky-trains.
They said approximately 2.6 billion US dollar will be required to build the country's underground metro railway but will cost one billion dollar less to build monorails high over the ground. This was estimated by the urban transportation expert team of Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), involving in conducting the feasibility study of setting up the first metro rail line aiming at reducing the huge tailback on the road of capital Dhaka.
"The underground route will cost more as we have to make it firmly waterproof considering acute water-logging problems of Dhaka city security concern is another risk factor for the underground system in Dhaka," Senior Transport Adviser of JICA Tamaoki Watanabe told BSS on Friday.
Tomaoki said there is common concept that the government needs to acquire lots of land for building the over ground metro link but only some land in Gulistan area will be needed to acquire for setting up the over the ground railway track.

Vehicle plunged into the Rangit river, 9 killed in Jorethang
ANI, Jorethang, 28 August : Altogether nine people drowned, when the vehicle they were travelling, plunged into the Rangit river late last night, Sikim police today said.
The accident occured on the Jorethang Melli road when the vehicle, headed towards Siliguri, tried to negotiate a sharp bend. The bodies were recovered and, after autopsy, handed over to the relatives, DIG (Range) N Sridhar Rao incident. The exact cause of the accident could not be ascertained, the DIG added.

Water Bus Service introduced on Sadarghat-Gabtali route
UNB, Dhaka, 28 August : Inaugurating water bus service in the capital today (Saturday), Shipping Minister Shahjahan Khan said the government also has a plan to introduce similar water bus service in the southern parts of the country including Chandpur and Barisal.
Addressing the inaugural function at the Gabtali landing station in the morning, he said the government had planned in 2001 to introduce the waterbus service, but the BNP led 4-party alliance government had shelved the plan.
Two water buses - Turag and Buriganga - will ferry passengers on Sadarghat-Swarighat-Kholamura-Gabtali river route as a pilot project. The Shipping Minister hoped that another 10 waterbuses will be introduced on the route within 3-4 months.

Sea Plane to operate in Andaman Islands once again
Port Blair, 28 August : History will be relived in Andaman and Nicobar Islands once again as the local Administration has got clearance from Planning Commission of India for operation of ‘Sea Plane’ in these remote scattered Islands.
The only deference will be this time sea plane won’t be used for attack or counter attack by Japanese and British Forces but by the local Administration for connectivity between small small inhabited Islands, which are spread over a distance of about 800 km in Bay of Bengal. Between 1942 to 1945 Japanese forces during their occupation used to operate large number of Sea Planes in Andaman and Nicobar Islands. After independence though once there was an attempt to operate sea plane again but the maiden flight crash landed killing one passenger.
There are also evidences of operation of Catalina Flying Boats (Sea Planes) between Andaman and Nicobar Islands – Rangoon and Andaman and Nicobar Islands - Kolkata in 1950s. Even before Second World War, British forces, especially Royal Air Force used to operate Sutherland flying boats (Sea Plane) for mapping of these far-flung Islands.
According to the Director of Andaman’s Tourism Department, Binay Bhushan, the Director the Planning Commission has cleared Sea Plane operation in Andaman and Nicobar Islands from 1 October. The Sea Plane, which are originally called as Amphibian Aircraft, will be operated in these remote Indian Islands on 50:50 partnership basis. He added that the Andaman and Nicobar Administration has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Pawan Hans Helicopter Ltd. (PHHL), which will run the pilot project initially. As per the MoU PHHL will operate Sea Plane from 1 October.


Friday, August 27, 2010

North Bengal's Jalpaiguri, Darjeeling dist lowlying areas flooded

Siliguri, 27 August : Several low-lying areas of north Bengal in Jalpaiguri and Darjeeling districts were submerged Friday following heavy rainfall, which affected 5,000 people and led to a rise in the water level of the Teesta river.
Following this, the administration issued 'red signal' alert along both the banks of the river. Jalpaiguri district administration sources said 'red signal' was declared over both the banks after the water level of the Teesta river rose following heavy rainfall in the hilly and plains areas. The 'red signal' warning was issued from the Jalpaiguri town down the river to the Bangladesh border.
Several areas in the Siliguri subdivision of the Darjeeling district were submerged following heavy rainfall since Thursday. Low-lying areas in Siliguri subdivision like Naxalbari, Rangapani and Nayabasti have been flooded. The people of these areas staged a protest due to poor drainage system in the area. The weatherman has predicted very heavy rainfall in isolated places of the region till Saturday. File Photo

Gyaneshwari mishap accused Umakant killed in encounter
IANS, Kolkata, 27 August : Maoist leader Umakanta Mahato, a prime suspect in the Gyaneshwari Express sabotage case, was killed in an encounter with joint security forces in Jhargram area of West Midnapore district early Friday, a top police official said.
"Umakanta Mahato has been killed sometime early morning today following an encounter in a forest area of Jhargram," West Bengal director general of police (DGP) Bhupinder Singh told IANS over the phone. Mahato was the leader of tribal body People's Committee against Police Atrocities (PCPA), which has been blamed for causing the sabotage. The five-hour encounter that started at around 1.30am took place in the Mohanpur forest near Lodhashuli. A 9mm pistol and several rounds of ammunition have also been recovered, but Umakanto's associates managed to flee.
The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), probing the Gyaneshwari case, had earlier announced a reward of Rs1 lakh for information regarding Umakanta Mahato. Photo : PTI READ BBC STORY

Bangladesh PM Hasina's fondness to newspaper reading
Dhaka, 27 August : Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said here today that she feels discomfort whole day if she can not go through newspapers in the morning just like one feels uneasy if there is no salt in the curry.
While speaking as the chief guest at an ifter party hosted jointly by Bangladesh Federal Union of Journalists (BFUJ) and Dhaka Union of Journalists (DUJ) at the Jatiya Press Club (JPC), the prime minister said mere press clippings cannot satisfy her. "I feel a unique smell and flavour in freshly received copies of newspaper" she said adding she first gives a glimpse on the newspapers she receives at the beginning of her day just after performing her `fazr' prayer.

Maoists kill 3of a family in W Midnapore
Kolkata, 27 August : Three members of a family were killed Friday in West Midnapore district by Maoists on suspicion that they were police informers, police said.
"We were informed that three bodies of unknown persons were lying on the road in Kolaboni forest," Superintendent of Jhargram Police district Praveen Tripathi said. "The bodies were recovered and later identified as Gopal Mantri, his son Rajib and cousin Tapan, residents of Bagjhapa in Kolaboni area in Jhargram sub-division." "Maoist posters were also recovered from the area which state that the three were given capital punishment in the peoples' court for acting as police informers," said Tripathi. The three were first beaten severely and then arrows were shot at them from very close range, police said. File Photo
HC verdicts on 5th, 7th amendments historic, says Hasina
BSS, Dhaka, 27 August : Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today described as "historic" the High Court verdicts on the 5th and 7th amendments to the constitution saying these would pave the way for continuation of the constitutional process in the country. Sheikh Hasina made the comments while speaking before an Iftar Mahfil jointly organized by Bangladesh Federal Union of Journalists (BFUJ) and Dhaka Union of Journalist (DUJ) at Jatiya Press Club here.
The Prime Minister's comments came a day after the High Court verdict declaring the 7th amendment to the constitution illegal that had legitimized the military rule of former President H M Ershad.

22 injured in clash between CPIM, Trinamool in S Kolkata
Kolkata, 27 August : Trinamool Congress and CPI(M) supporters clashed during Kolkata Corporation polls at Baghajatin in South 24 Parganas district today, leaving ten injured, police said.
Stone pelting occurred in the clash during the elections to borough no 11 and 12 under the added area of the Kolkata Corporation, they said. Among the injured were Trinamool Congress leader Rupa Bachi and CPI(M) leader Chandana Ghosh Dastidar. All have been admitted to the SSKM hospital. Police and Rapid Action Force personnel lathi-charged the rival groups to disperse them.
The CPI(M) alleged Trinamool supporters provoked them when they were peacefully demonstrating against the "unethical way" the elections were being conducted in both the boroughs. The Trinamool Congress, on the other hand, claimed that police and the CPI(M) supporters attacked them, leaving many injured.
The CPI(M) has called a bandh in the two boroughs tomorrow in wake of the violence. Photo : PTI

"Nazrul's works to inspire new generation in coming eras"
Dhaka, 27 August : Bangladesh President Zillur Rahman today said the essence and ideals of the works of national poet Kazi Nazrul Islam would always inspire the new generations in the coming eras.
In a message on the occasion to 34th death anniversary of the National Poet, the President said creative works of the poet inspired all of us in our country's independence movement." Terming Nazrul as an endless source of inspiration, the President said Nazrul sang the song of freedom by raising his voice against tyranny, suppression and injustice.
Kolkata gets "Bridal Fashion Week"
Kolkata, 27 August : After the third edition of the Kolkata Fashion Week (KFW) was cancelled earlier this year due to a feud between the organisers, the city of joy is gearing up to host its first bridal-wear week next month.
With participation from some of the top-notch designers like Neeta Lulla and Vikram Phadnis, the four-day 'Kolkata Couture Fashion Week' showcasing exclusive bridal collections will be held from 9 September.
"With the wedding and festive season just around the corner, the time is ripe to hold such an event which will offer exquisite attire for all kinds of wedding ? Bengali, Marwari, Muslim, Punjabi, Sindhi and South Indian weddings," Vivek Agarwal, chief events coordinator of Idea Weavers, the organizers of the extravaganza told.

Appejay Logistics to invest Rs 200 crore at Haldia by 2015
Kolkata, 27 August : Apeejay Infralogistics, a 50:50 joint venture between the Apeejay Surrendra Group and Britain-based Eredene Capital Plc, Thursday announced the start of two new logistics parks in Haldia in WB, and Kalinganagar, Orissa.
'So far we have invested Rs.50-60 crore for both the projects,' Karan Paul, chairman, Apeejay Surrendra Group, said here. Erdene Capital has invested in 11 projects in India. The Haldia project would take another two-and-a-half year to be completed in phases. To be built on 90 acres, the project would entail investment of Rs.75 crore in phase I, Rs.75 crore in phase II and Rs.50 crore in phase III.
Rain brings smile back to Rajshahi region 'Aman' farmers
UNB, Rajshahi, 27 August : Rains brought smile back to farmers of Rajshahi region where transplanted aman plants were facing ruination for want of irrigation because of load-shedding and drought.
Department of Agriculture officials said some 792,950 hectares of land were targeted in the current season for aman cultivation in 8 districts of the region but only half of that was cultivated since the season started in July due to inadequate rain coupled with want of irrigation due to heavy load-shedding and voltage fluctuations. Frustrated by continuous outage farmers even threatened to renew movement for their earlier demand of 100-hour power supply free of cost for irrigation in dried up field to save their crops. But rains in the last few days in the region have reduced their anxiety to some extent and saved transplanted aman plants from ruination.
Farmer Zaidur of Ghipara village of Poba upazila told UNB that he had prepared seedbed for tilling aman on his 5 bighas of land but he could transplant the plants on only 2 bighas by irrigating water from depleting pond as frequent outage and insufficient rain made it impossible to cultivate all the land. He said he was getting worried as lengthy drought was drying up his land and killing transplanted plants on the cultivated 2 bighas of land. But he said the downpour in the last couple of days has saved his aman plants.


Thursday, August 26, 2010

GJM withdraws Darjeeling bandh following assurances from CID

Darjeeling, Kolkata, 26 August : Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) has suspended its indefinite Darjeeling bandh till 30 August with effect from today following assurances from the CID.
Nicole Tamang, the prime suspect in Akhil Bharatiya Gorkha League (ABGL) leader Madan Tamang's murder on 21 May, was slated to be produced in the court on 30 August. GJM Assistant General Secretary Binoy Tamang said, ''we have decided to postpone the bandh following assurances of speeding up the investigation process from the CID.'' The GJM had claimed that Nicole was 'murdered' while he was in the custody.
Earlier, the West Bengal police had announced a cash prize of Rs 50,000 for any information leading to the re-arrest of fugitive Nicole Tamang, who fled from the CID custody at Pintail village in Siliguri on Sunday morning. Life in the hills was disrupted in the wake of an GJM-sponsored indefinite period bandh demanding Tamang's production in the court.

'Ershad's military regime illegal' : Bangladesh High Court
Dhaka, 26 August : In a landmark verdict, the High Court has declared illegal the Seventh Amendment to the constitution that had legimatised the autocratic regime of military strongman Hussein Muhammad Ershad.
The bench of justices A H M Shamsuddin Chowdhury and Sheikh Mohammad Zakir Hossain handed down its ruling on Thursday. At the hearing on Wednesday, Anwar S Azim argued for the petitioner while additional attorneys general MK Rahman and Murad Reza represented the state. After the hearing, MK Rahman told journalists: "The constitution has no provisions for martial law or military rule. The then army chief HM Ershad illegally took over power."

North East' power ministers move Centre on "China dam"
PTI, Shillong, 26 August : Power ministers of north-eastern states have asked the Centre to ensure that the dam over Bramhaputra, as planned by China, does not have an ecological and environmental fall-out in the region.
Though unsure about the actual design of the dam, the power ministers, who met Union Power Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde and Petroleum Minister Murli Deorah in New Delhi yesterday, said the Centre should talk to China to see the Brahmaputra river did not get diverted.
"If the river is diverted, it will have a serious ecological and environmental impact on the region, particularly during the lean season," Meghalaya Power minister A T Mondal, also the Chairman of the North Eastern Regional Power Committee, told PTI over phone from Delhi.

1st Maoist surrender for rehab package in West Midnapore
Jhargram, Kolkata, 26 August : Nearly a month after the West Bengal government announced a rehabilitation package for ultras who give up arms, a Maoists today surrendered before police in West Midnapore district.
"Shobhan Karak alias Bijoy, a Maoist squad member, surrendered with arms at the district Police Lines," Superintendent of Police Manoj Kumar Verma told Bengal Newz. Bijoy was a resident of Goyaltore in the district, he said. "We will make a fixed deposit of 1.5 lakh in his name for three years and refer the case to rehabilitation committee," Verma said.

Stephen Court owner remanded...
Kolkata, 26 August : The owner of Stephen Court on Park Street here was today remanded in five days of police custody in connection with the fire that razed the heritage building on 23 March killing 43 people.
Sanjay Bagaria, was arrested from Saharanpur in Uttar Pradesh on Tuesday. "Though we demanded 14 days of police custody, the court has given five days of remand," an investigating officer said.
Six persons, including three directors of the building were listed in the charge sheet in connection with the fire. Liftman Tarun Bagaria and caretakers Ram Shankar Singh and Joy Praksh Singh were arrested earlier.
Mother Teresa International film festival opens in Kolkata
Kolkata, 26 August : The Mother Teresa International Film Festival, 2010, got underway today with the premier of 'Mother Teresa' a documentary made by two American sisters about the Nobel laureate nun.
"I declare the festival open," Missionaries of Charity superior-general Sr Prema said at the function at Nandan film complex. Organised in collaboration with the MoC, the UNESCO and Catholic Relief Service, the festival opened with the 82 minute documentary made in 1986 by Ann and Jeanette Petrie of the US. Shot in 24 locations spanning 10 countries over five continents, the film is seen as a definitive work on the Nobel laureate nun.

Two pro-Maoist activists held in Gyaneshwari tragedy case
IANS, Kolkata, 26 August : Two pro-Maoist activists were arrested from West Midnapore district Thursday in connection with the 28 May Gyaneshwari Express tragedy, in which 148 passengers were killed, police said.
"Dayamoy Mahato and Ram Mudi were arrested from Indiraboni area in Jhargram sub-division of the district," said Arun Bothra, Central Bureau of Investigation's Superintendent of Special Crime Branch (SCB) Kolkata. "The duo arrested by the CBI officials are active members of the pro-Maoist tribal body Peoples' Committee Against police Atrocities," a senior police officer of Jhargram said. Bothra said: "Both Dayamoy and Ram's names did not figure in the list of the wanted accused for whose capture cash rewards were announced by the CBI. During interrogation, we came to know about their involvement in the Gyaneshwari sabotage case and they were arrested."
With the arrest of Dayamoy and Ram, as many as 15 accused have been held in connection with the Gyaneshwari case, said the CBI officer.

Heroin worth Rs 12 lakh (400 grams) seized in Mizoram
PTI, Aizawl, 26 August : About 400 grams of heroin, worth Rs 12 lakh in local market, were seized and six persons arrested by police and anti-drug cell of the Young Mizo Association (YMA) here, police said today.
The contraband was seized from the six persons by the joint force last night and it was suspected that the narcotics had been smuggled in from Myanmar via Manipur.

Tagore being translated into Chinese
Kolkata, 26 August : Complete works of Rabindranath Tagore are being translated into Chinese, according to a city-based consortium which will participate in the Beijing international Book Fair beginning from 30 August.
A marble statue of Tagore will be installed in Shanghai to mark the poet's 150th birth anniversary, president of the Consortium for Books and Culture Debajyoti Dutta said here yesterday. He said there has been a sea-change in attitude of the Chinese authorities towards Rabindranath who visited that country in the first half the 20th century. Dutta said India is the theme country at the Beijing Book Fair.
The organisation would also focus on Tagore to mark the poet's 150th birth anniversary. He said that 28 organisations from India would take part in the fair

Former diplomat Devare seeks peoples' involvement in LEP
Agartala, 26 August : India has initiated several initiatives aimed at enhancing connectivity between the Northeast and Southeast Asian countries, but the cooperation and involvement of people of the region was essential for the success of Look East Policy (LEP), said former diplomat and Secretary of the Ministry of External Affairs Sudhir Devare.
Interacting with the students and faculty members of Tripura Central University yesterday Devare highlighted that India had taken up some potential infrastructural projects under LEP for strengthening South Asian regional cooperation

Mother Teresa's birth centenary celebrations begins today
PTI, Kolkata, 26 August : The year-long birth centenary celebrations of Mother Teresa began today with a solemn mass here where Pope Benedict XVI exhorted her order, the Missionaries of Charity, to draw inspiration from her in serving the poor, the sick and the abandoned.
"I am confident that this year will be for the Church and the world an occasion of joyful gratitude to God for the inestimable gift that Mother Teresa was in her lifetime and continues to be through the affectionate and tireless work for you, her spiritual children," the Pope said in a message to MoC superior- general Sr Prema. The Pope said Teresa exemplified the message of St John "...if God loves us, we ought also to love one another. God abides in us and his love is perfected in us."
The early morning mass at the first-floor chapel of Mother House was attended by Cardinal Telesphore Placidus Toppo of Ranchi besides 60 priests. Toppo said Mother Teresa's life was driven by a passion to build lives through forgiveness, healing, giving them respect and through making them true human beings in the image and likeness of God.
Archbishop of Kolkata Lucas Sirkar, Bishop of Baruipur Salvadore Lobo, Archbishop Emeritus Henry D'Souza were present as also Fr Brian Kolodeijchuk, the postulator for the cause of Teresa's sainthood. Balloons and pigeons were released after the mass. Photos : AFP, Reuters (More Photos at www.facebook.com/bengalnewz )