Saturday, November 10, 2001, Chandigarh, India





National Capital Region--Delhi

THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
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N A T I O N

Stamp on Maharaja Ranjit Singh released
New Delhi, November 9
President K. R. Narayanan today urged the people to follow the legacy of Sher-e-Punjab Maharaja Ranjit Singh.

President K.R. Narayanan releases a commemorative postage stamp President K.R. Narayanan releases a commemorative postage stamp on Maharaja Ranjit Singh at Rashtrapati Bhavan in Delhi on Friday. Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal is also seen in the picture.

Unilateral ‘ceasefire’ in J&K ruled out
Dehra Dun, November 9
India has denied the allegations of Pakistan President General Pervez Musharraf that it is committing state terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir.

RSS attacks BJP on party-govt imbalance
New Delhi, November 9
In a hard-hitting comment on the ongoing tussle within the BJP, the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) today said, “Every good political party should have its organisational and legislative wings on equal footing and its role should be clearly defined.”



EARLIER STORIES

 

Bollywood star and teenage heartthrob Hrithik Roshan (C, yellow shirt) is mobbed by his fans as he arrives to inaugurate a chain of jewellery stores in Mumbai on Friday. Sales of gold and diamond jewellery, which is a craze among Indian women, pick-up during the biggest Indian festival of lights 'Divali.' — Reuters


Tibetan Youth Congress activists raise slogans at a demonstration to condemn the forthcoming visit of Mr Pan Zenshou, Vice-Minister of Culture, People Republic of China, in New Delhi on Friday. — PTI 


A view of an anti-war and anti-WTO rally organised by the CPI (ML) in New Delhi on Friday. — PTI 

CPM allegations baseless: BJP
New Delhi, November 9
With Assembly elections approaching and Hindu votes in mind, the Bharatiya Janata Party today took strong exception to CPM’s allegation about Hindutva forces being behind Malegaon incidents in Maharashtra.

Maneka’s allegations against Sonia refuted
New Delhi, November 9
The Congress today refuted as “preposterous and false” the allegations made by Culture Minister Maneka Gandhi that certain objectionable remarks made in a book authored by Katherine Frank on her and her late husband were at the instance of party President Sonia Gandhi.

’84 riots: Gujral, Paswan summoned
New Delhi, November 9
The Nanavati Commission probing the 1984-riots afresh, today issued summons to former Prime Minister, Mr I.K. Gujral and six others to appear before it as witness. Mr Gujral has been asked to appear on December 3 and Union Minister, Ram Vilas Paswan on December 10.

Conference on discipline in Parliament
New Delhi, November 9
More than 300 top leaders of the country, including the Prime Minister, the Speaker of the Lok Sabha, presiding officers, Chief Ministers and leaders of parties, will meet at a conference here on November 25 to evolve an enforceable code of conduct to enhance the dignity of parliamentary institutions and ensure orderly functioning during the proceedings.

Jessica case: police made secret calls
New Delhi, November 9
Throwing light on a new aspect of investigation into the Jessica Lal murder case, a prosecution witness owning a public telephone booth stated before the trial court that the police had secretly taped certain telephonic conversations after turning him out of the booth.

Entertainment tax: 60 pc ceiling recommended
New Delhi, November 9
A committee for the development of the entertainment sector has arrived at a consensus on fixing a uniform ceiling of 60 per cent on the entertainment tax in all states. The committee has, however, given states the liberty to fix its entertainment duty rate below or at this ceiling.


 


The Shahi Imam Syed Ahmed Bukhari addressed a public meeting in New Delhi today.
(28k, 56k)
A member of the Daud Ibrahim gang was arrested in Bangalore with fake stamps worth Rs 12 crore.
(28k, 56k)
The police has apprehended a woman charged with poaching 12 tortoises of an endangered variety in Gorakhpur.
(28k, 56k)

Vegetarianism seems to be the latest fad. Why is this trend moving in so fast? Is it going to last? 

(28k, 56k)

A glimpse of dependency on drugs by the high society.
(28k, 56k)

The Dalai Lama justifies the US attacks on Afghanistan, but advocates a non-violent method to prevent terrorism.

(28k, 56k)

 

 

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Stamp on Maharaja Ranjit Singh released
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, November 9
President K. R. Narayanan today urged the people to follow the legacy of Sher-e-Punjab Maharaja Ranjit Singh.

Releasing a commemorative postage stamp on Maharaja Ranjit Singh at an impressive ceremony at Rashtrapati Bhavan, Mr Narayanan said the Sher-e-Punjab was a “multi-dimensional personality wedded to the values of secularism, humanism and tolerance.”

He said Maharaja Ranjit Singh was an outstanding ruler with progressive ideas and considered all as equal in his vast empire. Mr Narayanan also appreciated Maharaja Ranjit Singh’s rule for abolition of the death penalty during his regime.

Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal, in his welcome address, strongly pleaded for floating of a global award for international and religious tolerance named after Maharaja Ranjit Singh.

Mr Badal also urged the Centre to declare the birthday of the Maharaja as National Solidarity Day as he laid the foundations of the modern day secular India and became the symbol of the glory of the whole nation.

Highlighting the Maharaja’s commitment to liberal and secular ideals, Mr Badal said “though a devout Sikh, the Maharaja did not declare Sikhism to be the official religion of his empire.”

Fully justifying the bicentenary celebrations of the coronation of the great Maharaja, the Punjab Chief Minister said “We remember the event as a celebration of the values that he introduced in Indian society.”

The Chief Minister expressed gratitude to the Centre for agreeing to the state government’s request to commemorate the Sarkar-e-Khalsa headed by the Maharaja on a national scale.

“We see it as a continuation of the process started by the government headed by Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee to restore to the Khalsa its well-deserved honour of being the sword arm of the nation.”

Union Communications Minister Pramod Mahajan said his Ministry had decided to release the postage stamp of Maharaja Ranjit Singh keeping in view his valuable contribution in Indian history and deep impact on our cultural heritage.

Union Minister for Chemical and Fertilizers Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa was among several top Punjab leaders present on the occasion.Top

 

Unilateral ‘ceasefire’ in J&K ruled out
Kulwinder Sandhu
Tribune News Service

Dehra Dun, November 9
India has denied the allegations of Pakistan President General Pervez Musharraf that it is committing state terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir. Talking to the mediapersons here today, Union Home Minister L.K. Advani said that it was unfortunate on the part of General Musharraf, who himself was under immense pressure from the hardliners who had compelled him to make an immature statement.

He said, “General Musharraf’s statement was preposterous as well as ridiculous.” He lashed out at Pakistan saying that their neighbour was training mercenaries to kill innocent people in Kashmir valley. More than four lakh Kashmiri Pandits had migrated from the valley due to fear of bullets.

To a question he said that India was not considering this time going ahead with a unilateral ceasefire in Kashmir during the Ramzan period. Last year, India went ahead with unilateral ceasefire during Ramzan. This year, the situation was different. All nations had come out with a united front to eliminate terrorism from the world. And India would not allow terrorists to kill innocent people. So far, more than 1,400 persons, including the terrorists, had been killed in Jammu and Kashmir in the past two months.

Mr Advani said that present situation of Pakistan was like two conspirators, one of which chose to be an approver under pressure. Pakistan supported the Taliban regime in Afghanistan to set up their government in Kabul and when the situation went out of control it became approver fearing military action from the joint front of the world community.

“Pakistan rulers must realise the fact that terrorism is not in the interest of either Pakistan or India. One or the other day Pakistan would also have to face a big internal problem. Therefore, General Musharraf should turn his face off from patronising cross-border terrorism in J&K. This is in the interest of both India and Pakistan.

He again ruled out “hot pursuit” against Pakistan to destroy terrorist training camps across the LoC. He said, “Hot pursuit is a legitimate resort at a situation like this but India does not prefer to cross the LoC and violate the International Law.” He denied having any information regarding US appeal to Pakistan handing over Dawood Ibrahim, Tiger Memon and others accused in Bombay blasts to India. “But if the media reports are true, it is a welcome step”, he said.

In the morning, Mr Advani inspected the parade of Uttaranchal police while participating in the anniversary celebrations of Uttaranchal. Uttaranchal was carved out of Uttar Pradesh on November 9, last year. He presented police medals to many police personnel for achievements while on duty.

Later, the Union Home Minister attended a political conference organised by the state unit of the BJP. Addressing the gathering, he asked the party workers to prepare for the coming Assembly elections to consolidate power in Uttaranchal as well as Uttar Pradesh.

He congratulated the people of Uttaranchal on this historic day. But he did not announce any financial assistance to the new state. However, he said that the Union Government was always ready to help the new state whenever needed.Top

 

RSS attacks BJP on party-govt imbalance
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, November 9
In a hard-hitting comment on the ongoing tussle within the BJP, the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) today said, “Every good political party should have its organisational and legislative wings on equal footing and its role should be clearly defined.”

Concerned over the erosion of the BJP’s credibility in the masses as well as in the RSS cadres, RSS spokesman M G Vaidya told newspersons here that even Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee was not “above” the party.

Confronted with the fact that Mr Vajpayee was projected as a prime ministerial candidate even before the elections and also his domineering role in the appointment of Mr Narendra Modi as the Gujarat Chief Minister, Mr Vaidya in a curt manner said, “He (Mr Vajpayee) is a member of the party and can’t be above the party and the Prime Minister is elected by the Members of Parliament of the ruling party.”

Mr Vaidya, who faced a volley of questions pertaining to the differences in the BJP and the looming influence of the RSS over the party, emphasised that “while the legislative wing of the party takes care of the administrative issues pertaining to governance, the organisational wing looks after the party’s organisational matters.”

Strongly defending his article in the recent issue of the RSS’s mouthpiece “Panchajanya”, Mr Vaidya asserted that “both (legislative and organisational wings) should compliment each other instead of one wing dominating the other... the party President should have equal importance as those in the legislative wing,” Mr Vaidya asserted.

To a question on the apparent difference between the RSS and the BJP, especially in the light of BJP spokesman Sunil Shastri recently observing that the RSS kept making many statements and the party was not bound to follow it, Mr Vaidya said, “We express our opinion on various issues, no one is bound to accept it.”Top

 

CPM allegations baseless: BJP
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, November 9
With Assembly elections approaching and Hindu votes in mind, the Bharatiya Janata Party today took strong exception to CPM’s allegation about Hindutva forces being behind Malegaon incidents in Maharashtra.

In a statement, BJP general secretary and official spokesperson Maya Singh said not only that these allegations were “baseless and malicious” but the CPM was trying to politicise Malegaon incident.

She said on the one hand the CPM had criticised the police and on the other hand also blamed Hindutva forces.

The CPM was trying to give a national dimension to a local incident, the BJP leader said and stressed that this attempt “needs to be condemned by all”.

When asked if the BJP was a Hindutva force, she parried the question saying that the party was merely asking to present the incident at Malegaon in the right perspective.Top

 

84 riots: Gujral, Paswan summoned
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, November 9
The Nanavati Commission probing the 1984-riots afresh, today issued summons to former Prime Minister, Mr I.K. Gujral and six others to appear before it as witness.

Mr Gujral has been asked to appear on December 3, Union Minister, Ram Vilas Paswan on December 10, Mr Sharad Yadav on January 3, former Union Minister, Madhu Dandavate on January 7, eminent lawyer and former Law Minister, Shanti Bhushan on January 11, Vice-Chairman of the National Commission for Minorities, Tarlochan Singh on January 16 and BJP ideologue, K.R. Malkani.

They were issued summons to appear as witness as their names have appeared in the statements given by other witnesses before the commission.

Mr Ram Vilas Paswan had filed an affidavit before the commission indicating the sequence of events which were known to him.

The statements of witnesses indicated that these persons had actively made an effort in mobilising public opinion or in controlling the riots which had occurred following the assassination of the then Prime Minister, Indira Gandhi, on October 30.Top

 

Maneka’s allegations against Sonia refuted

New Delhi, November 9
The Congress today refuted as “preposterous and false” the allegations made by Culture Minister Maneka Gandhi that certain objectionable remarks made in a book authored by Katherine Frank on her and her late husband were at the instance of party President Sonia Gandhi.

Taking strong exception to the charge, AICC Foreign Affairs Department Chairman Natwar Singh said Ms Sonia Gandhi was in no way associated with the publication of Indira Gandhi’s biography by Ms Frank.

“Ms Maneka Gandhi had made common cause with the worst detractors of Indira Gandhi during her lifetime and accepted the position of a junior minister in the BJP-led government. The ruling party has always been hostile to the Gandhi family,” Mr Natwar Singh said.

The Leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha has always zealously guarded the dignity and privacy of her family, he added. UNI Top

 

Conference on discipline in Parliament
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, November 9
More than 300 top leaders of the country, including the Prime Minister, the Speaker of the Lok Sabha, presiding officers, Chief Ministers and leaders of parties, will meet at a conference here on November 25 to evolve an enforceable code of conduct to enhance the dignity of parliamentary institutions and ensure orderly functioning during the proceedings.

The conference, which is being held at the initiative of Lok Sabha Speaker G.M.C. Balayogi, will be inaugurated by Vice-President and ex-officio Chairman of the Rajya Sabha Krishan Kant. Leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha Sonia Gandhi will initiate a debate on important issues, according to Lok Sabha Secretariat sources.

The presiding officers of the legislatures, at a high-level parley in Chandigarh, held in June, arrived at a consensus that a conference should be organised to evolve ways and means to tackle indiscipline and disorder in the legislatures. Mr Balayogi was of the view that immediate measures should be taken to maintain order in the legislatures to restore their image among the people in cooperation with the leaders of all political parties.Top

 

Jessica case: police made secret calls

New Delhi, November 9
Throwing light on a new aspect of investigation into the Jessica Lal murder case, a prosecution witness owning a public telephone booth stated before the trial court that the police had secretly taped certain telephonic conversations after turning him out of the booth.

“They (police) turned me out of the booth saying that they have some secret call to make. There was a private person also and they had made some recording of telephone conversation. But, I was made to stay outside when the call was made,” Ayub Khan, who has a booth in Okhla, told Additional Sessions Judge R.L. Chugh.

He said the police had affixed the conference instrument of its own for taping the conversation on May 10 around 9 a.m. and stayed there for about 30 minutes and after that they paid him Rs 447 and tore the printout slips from the role.Top

 

Entertainment tax: 60 pc ceiling recommended
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, November 9
A committee for the development of the entertainment sector has arrived at a consensus on fixing a uniform ceiling of 60 per cent on the entertainment tax in all states. The committee has, however, given states the liberty to fix its entertainment duty rate below or at this ceiling.

The recommendations have been made by a committee constituted during the State Information Ministers Conference (SIMCON) in January. The committee which met on Thursday was attended by representatives from Assam, Jharkhand, Jammu and Kashmir, Karnataka, Mizoram, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu.

Briefing newspersons here on Friday, Union Minister for Information and Broadcasting, Ms Sushma Swaraj, said, “The committee has recommended parity in concessions and local taxes with the entertainment sector and the Information Technology sector.

The committee also asked the states to explore the best method of introducing computerised ticketing to remove tax evasion and incorrect disclosure of sales volumes.

It has suggested constitution of state-level committees to focus on piracy. The committee has also urged the Centre to put together two training modules, one for senior police officers and another for junior police officers to educate them on laws related to piracy, requirement of evidence and structure of the industry. Top

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