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N A T I O N

Mulayam announces sops for Emergency detainees
Lucknow, June 26
Chief Minister Mulayam Singh Yadav today extended his generosity to political leaders arrested during Emergency by granting them a pension of Rs 500 per month and free travel along with an escort in state-run buses.

50 Tibetans detained

New Delhi, June 26
The Delhi Police detained 50 Tibetans this afternoon as they tried to barge into the Chinese Embassy in the Chanakyapuri area here.

Policemen prevent Tibetan Youth Congress (TYC) activists from entering the Chinese Embassy during a protest in New Delhi on Monday.
Policemen prevent Tibetan Youth Congress (TYC) activists from entering the Chinese Embassy during a protest in New Delhi on Monday. — AFP photo

UP Governor-HC tussle goes to SC
New Delhi, June 26
Concerned over a peculiar situation arising out of a virtual confrontation between Uttar Pradesh Governor T V Rajeshwar and the Allahabad High Court on the transfer of Raj Bhawan’s legal adviser to Ballia as Additional District Judge (ADJ), the Centre today moved the Supreme Court challenging the impugned verdict.


EARLIER STORIES

THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS


Rajasthan not doing enough for drought-hit: Sonia
Jaisalmer, June 26
Congress President Sonia Gandhi today accused the Rajasthan Government of “not doing enough” to provide relief to the drought affected in the state, saying it has even failed to utilise the Central funds for the purpose.

NDA MLAs fight in Chapra street
Chapra, June 26
The Sports and Youth Affairs Minister of Bihar Janardan Singh Sigriwal today picked up a quarrel with a fellow NDA MLA in full public glare near a busy road-crossing here.

Conversion charge: 4 nuns held in Tirupati
Tirupati, June 26
Four nuns were arrested from the premises of Sri Venkateswara Ruia Government Hospital on charges of alleged proselytism.

Puberty at six!
Patna, June 26
A six-year-old boy with all the traits of an adult— moustache, beard and muscle power to lift a person of 70 kgs — is making waves here.

SC refuses to stay UP Speaker’s ruling
New Delhi, June 26
The Supreme Court today declined to stay the order of Uttar Pradesh Assembly Speaker disqualifying five MLAs of Loktantrik Bahujan Dal (LBD), a breakaway group of the BSP, led by Mayawati, which had latter merged with ruling Samajwadi Party.

‘Nizam’ to pay $700,000 mehr to third wife
Hyderabad, June 26
The eighth Nizam of Hyderabad Prince Mukarram Jah will have to pay a small fortune to his estranged third wife Manolya Onur following a divorce settlement.

Liberate party from 5-star culture, RSS tells BJP
New Delhi, June 26
Expressing strong disapproval at the way the BJP had grown over the years, the RSS has advised the party to become “cadre-centric” and liberate itself from the “malice of five-star culture,” offering the services of five to seven senior ‘pracharaks’ to take the saffron party ‘back to the basics.’

Thomas award for Agnivesh
Bangalore, June 26
Noted human rights activist Swami Agnivesh has been selected for this year's prestigious M.A.Thomas National Human Rights Award, instituted by the Vigil India Movement, in recognition of his contribution to protection of human rights.

Rane’s son booked for rash driving
Mumbai, June 26
Nilesh Rane, son of Maharashtra Revenue Minister Narayan Rane, was booked for negligent driving after his car hit and injured a policeman at Carter Road in suburban Khar, a senior police official said.

Communal violence Bill: states views sought
New Delhi, June 26
To avoid any rift between the Centre and the state governments over the provisions of the Communal Violence (Prevention, Control and Rehabilitation of Victims) Bill ,2005,the parliamentary standing committee on Home has sought the comments of experts, state governments and major political parties on the Bill.

Programme to combat AIDS to be launched today
New Delhi, June 26
The Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports is all set to launch ‘YUVA’ (Youth United for Victory on AIDS), an ambitious programme involving more than two crore volunteers from seven national youth organisations.

Child abuse case: British national’s plea admitted
Mumbai, June 26
The Bombay High Court today admitted an appeal filed by British nationals Duncan Grant and Alan Waters, challenging a Sessions Court order sentencing them to six years rigorous imprisonment on charges of child abuse.

Ex-Naxalite weds tribesman
Nagpur, Jun 25
A jailed Naxalite Sunita, who had surrendered in November last year, today tied the knot with a tribesman as Gadchiroli police persons played host to over 300 baratis.

Police opens fire at protesters
Warangal (AP), June 26
The police today opened fire in the air to disperse a violent crowd protesting against the murder of a candidate contesting in the local bodies election at Guduru, about 75 km from here.

N.S. Ramaswamy appointed Professor
New Delhi, June 26
Noted management specialist N.S. Ramaswamy, eminent professor of political jurisprudence M.V. Pylee and socialist Veena Mazumdar have been appointed as National Research Professors for their unique contribution in their respective fields.

Govt for probe mechanism for NCM
New Delhi, June 26
Aimed at providing more power to the National Commission for Minorities (NCM), the Centre is considering proposals to equip it with an investigation mechanism of its own.

Krishmamurty in New Jersey's "Who's Who"
New Delhi, June 26
Former Election Commissioner G.V. G.Krishnamurty figures in an American publication as "world's most distinguished individuals".

Namwar is Hindi varsity Chancellor
New Delhi, June 26
Noted Hindi critic Dr Namwar Singh has been appointed Chancellor of the Mahatma Gandhi International Hindi University in Gujarat.

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Mulayam announces sops for Emergency detainees
Shahira Naim
Tribune News Service

Lucknow, June 26
Chief Minister Mulayam Singh Yadav today extended his generosity to political leaders arrested during Emergency by granting them a pension of Rs 500 per month and free travel along with an escort in state-run buses.

Describing them as ‘soldiers of democracy’, he promised more facilities to them. This move is bound to embarrass the Congress-led UPA government in the Centre.

The Samajwadi Party today observed the 31st anniversary of Emergency by felicitating political prisoners of the state who were arrested by the Indira Gandhi regime under the Maintenance of Internal Security Act (MISA) and the Defence of India Rules Act (DRI) during 1975-77.

The decision to honour and grant benefits to Emergency detainees after a lapse of 31 years comes close on the heels of the unprecedented announcement of a dole of Rs 500 to the unemployed youth of the state.

Arriving along with another detainee of the Emergency George Fernandes, Mr Yadav and a host of senior Samajwadi leaders addressed a packed auditorium of Emergency detainees.

Among the audience were socialists of various hues as well as a large number of erstwhile Jan Sangh and RSS members.

Mr Yadav admitted that the sacrifices of these detainees had brought him and a lot of fellow prisoners of that era to power. “It was due to your sacrifice that Patna, Bhopal, Lucknow and even New Delhi had changed forever.”

Proclaiming that a “situation reminiscent of Emergency was unfolding in the country” Mr Yadav said that once again in Delhi there were forces who were ready to go to any extent to repress those who oppose them.

Hinting at the Sahara-Jet controversy, Mr Yadav said that this was an example of how the government was trying to destroy those who were trying to help him build a stronger Uttar Pradesh.

Demanding an end to the “cycle of repression”, Mr Yadav reminded the Congress that there were a large number of followers of Ram Manohar Lohia and Jai Prakash Narain who were still alive and would not bow to their wishes.

He directly attacked Congress President Sonia Gandhi for “lying” and misleading the nation as far as development and the power situation in Rae Bareli was concerned.

Admitting that Rae Bareli was “extremely backward”, he demanded to know who was responsible for it when “in the last 55 years, almost always some member of the same family has been elected from there”.

He said on the other hand, capable and leading captains of Indian industry who had collected under the banner of the Uttar Pradesh Development Council to give him sane advice for the development of the state were constantly being threatened with raids.

Mr Fernandes recalled the hardships that his immediate family members had to undergo during that period. He praised Mr Yadav for his venture and regretted why the earlier governments in which he was a member had not thought of this.

“Today I can see a similar situation when mass movements opposing the anti-people policies of the Central government will have to face dictatorial cruelty,” warned Fernandes.

Among the Samajwadi leaders who spoke on the occasion were National Vice-President Janeswar Mishra, Samajwadi MPs Mohan Singh, Hari Kewal Prasad, Bhagwati Singh and state President Ram Sharan Das.

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50 Tibetans detained
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, June 26
The Delhi Police detained 50 Tibetans this afternoon as they tried to barge into the Chinese Embassy in the Chanakyapuri area here.

The demonstrators, which included some monks, clashed with the embassy guards as they tried to barge inside the premises, said police sources.

Raising slogans :“Free Tibet’’ and against the Chinese government ,the agitators also burnt Chinese flags. The demonstrators also clashed with the police, which tried to prevent them.

A senior police official said that 50 of the protestors had been detained.

Demonstrators said the protest was against the new rail link connecting Qinghai province with Tibetan capital Lhasa.

This, they alleged, would further increase migration to Tibet by the Chinese, which was trying to erode its culture and heritage.

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UP Governor-HC tussle goes to SC
S S Negi
Legal Correspondent

New Delhi, June 26
Concerned over a peculiar situation arising out of a virtual confrontation between Uttar Pradesh Governor T V Rajeshwar and the Allahabad High Court on the transfer of Raj Bhawan’s legal adviser to Ballia as Additional District Judge (ADJ), the Centre today moved the Supreme Court challenging the impugned verdict.

While the High Court had ordered Governor’s Additional Legal Adviser Pradeep Dubey to Ballia as ADJ recently and the Governor refused to implement the directive. As a consequence, the High Court constituted a “Full Court Bench”, which declared all the subsequent orders passed by the Governor regarding Dubey’s transfer as “ineffective and inoperative”.

The Full Court Bench had further ruled that all the orders subsequent to the transfer of Dubey, issued by Raj Bhawan were not legally tenable and directed that the Principal Secretary to the Governor should appear before it on July 4 to explain the situation..

Aggrieved by the High Court order, the Centre through Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Gopal Subramaniam, made a special mention of the matter before a vacation Bench of Mr Justice A R Lakshmanan and Mr Justice Altamas Kabir at the fag end of today’s proceedings. He sought permission for filing an urgent hearing of a special leave petition (SLP) against the High Court order and listing of it for hearing tomorrow.

While granting permission to the Union Government to file the SLP, the Bench ordered its listing for hearing tomorrow if filing formalities with the Registry were completed.

The ASG said since the matter was hanging fire and the High Court had ordered setting up of another “Full Court Bench” to take up the matter on July 4, it needed to be heard urgently. During the brief hearing, the apex court observed that it seemed to be a “clash of egos”.

Since the Governor acts as an agent of the Centre in a state, any legal issue pertaining to his any action has to be taken up by the Centre.

Dubey, a state judicial service officer, working as legal advisor to the Governor for the past 12 years, was recently transferred by the High Court Administration to Ballia and when Raj Bhawan refused to comply with the order, the High Court placed him under suspension.

The Governor, however, took a stand that it was mandatory for the High Court to have his “concurrence view” before taking any decision about the transfer of Dubey out of Raj Bhawan and sent a communication to the Court Administration to this effect.

Intervention of the State Government in the matter by appointing Vijay Verma as new legal adviser to the Governor, complicated the matter further. The State Government’s stand was that it was only complying with the judicial verdict of the High Court.

After a virtual face-off between Raj Bhawan and the High Court Administration on the issue, the latter ordered constitution of a fresh Full Court Bench to hear the matter further on July 4 when the Governor’s Principal Secretary is supposed to appear before it.

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Rajasthan not doing enough for drought-hit: Sonia

Jaisalmer, June 26
Congress President Sonia Gandhi today accused the Rajasthan Government of “not doing enough” to provide relief to the drought affected in the state, saying it has even failed to utilise the Central funds for the purpose.

Ms Gandhi, on a two-day visit to the state, while reviewing the drought relief works in Mool Sagar, Damodara, Kanoi and Sam villages in this district, told reporters that the state government has failed to utilise the Central aid and funds for the purpose.

She said the ruling BJP Government was not making adequate arrangements to mitigate the sufferings of the people in the drought-hit areas and she had received a number of complaints regarding lacunae in the relief works.

The state Congress unit took her to affected villages in western Rajasthan where the National Rural Employment Guarantee Programme (NREGP) has not been implemented till now to prove their allegation that BJP Government was ignorant of the plight of the suffering people.

The Congress President also interacted with labourers. “The labourers are being given inferior quality foodgrains and are not even getting adequate days of employment,” she charged.

Ms Gandhi’s visit has charged the political atmosphere in the state, fuelling what the Opposition describes as “drought politics,” which it alleges was aimed at reviving the party in the state.

Seriously rejecting the allegations by the Congress President, State Relief Minister Kirorilal Meena alleged the Centre has not sanctioned any fund to Rajasthan under the relief head in 2005-06, despite the demand for allocation of foodgrain and cash component having been made six months ago.

Mr Meena said the Centre has allocated only two lakh metric tonnes of foodgrain against the demand for 15.86 lakh metric tonnes, adding the UPA Government’s partisan attitude “is making the people suffer for no reason.

He also claimed that Ms Gandhi’s visit is a desperate attempt to revive the “moribund Congress party” in the state and bring the “constantly quarelling factions” in the party together.

Ms Gandhi reached here this morning around 0900 hrs and headed straight to Mulsagar village. She later visited the Damodara village where she inspected a cattle camp and reviewed the relief works. She also visited Kanoi and Sam village. — UNI

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NDA MLAs fight in Chapra street
Tribune News Service and PTI

Chapra, June 26
The Sports and Youth Affairs Minister of Bihar Janardan Singh Sigriwal today picked up a quarrel with a fellow NDA MLA in full public glare near a busy road-crossing here.

The BJP minister and Mr Rampravesh Rai of the JD(U) entered into heated exchanges at a busy road-crossing near the Bhagwan Bazaar Chowk police station when the minister was returning to the circuit house from his ancestral Jalalpur village.

Mr Sigriwal charged that Mr Rai stopped his car and hurled choicest abuses when he saw a councillor of the district board, Vinay Bihari Mahato, accompanying him in his official vehicle.

Mr Rai demanded that Mr Mahato disembark from the vehicle and alleged that the minister was “interfering” in matters relating to his constituency in view of the June 30 election to the post of chairman of the Saran district board.

Mr Sigriwal said that he reprimanded the MLA, saying “I am a minister and you should first learn how to behave with someone occupying the post” to which Mr Rai retorted saying “you are an MLA first and then a minister”.

Mr Rai, on the other hand, denied having used filthy language and said he only advised the minister to sit together and sort out the differences over the issue of the election of the chairman. “I said his interference will only bring a bad name to the ruling alliance,” Mr Rai claimed.

As the two NDA MLAs quarrelled in the street, the passersby watched the drama with keen interest before the two headed for the nearby police station.

When contacted, Mr Sigriwal said that he spoke to the Chief Minister and requested him to take disciplinary action against the MLA for threatening him with dire consequences.

He also charged the MLA with being in league with Superintendent of Police, Saran, Mr Satyendra Singh. “The SP did not take care to come to the police station though I narrated the incident to him on his cell phone,” he said.

Both the minister and JD(U) MLA sat at the Bhagwan Bazaar police station for a few hours and talked of filing complaints against each other for allegedly having issued threats but none actually filed a complaint, police sources said.

PATNA: Meanwhile, two days after he created ugly scenes at a posh hotel here, Bihar’s ruling JD(U) today issued a show cause notice to its MLA Sunil Pandey asking him to explain within 10 days his “indecent” conduct.

The 10-line notice issued by the party’s principal general secretary, Mr Upendra Prasad Singh Kushwaha, took serious note of the “indecent and dishonourable” conduct of the MLA at the upmarket Maurya hotel on June 24 which was flashed on various TV news channels. Mr Kushwaha, who released a copy of the show cause notice at a press conference, said if a need arose, the JD (U) would definitely take action against Mr Pandey.

“The party will never shirk its duty if it is established after a thorough inquiry that Pandey is guilty. Whatever disciplinary action is needed will be taken,” he said when asked if the party was contemplating disciplinary action against Pandey.

Mr Kushwaha admitted that such actions by party MLAs definitely hurt the image of the party. 

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Conversion charge: 4 nuns held in Tirupati

Tirupati, June 26
Four nuns were arrested from the premises of Sri Venkateswara Ruia Government Hospital on charges of alleged proselytism.

According to hospital sources, the nuns, who visited the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD) funded government hospital, asked the patients of their 
names and details to perform “healing prayers” in a local church last night.

The hospital staff and attendants asked the nuns not to indulge in such an act and leave the premises.

This was the third incident. On two earlier occasions, nuns had indulged in evangelical activities in Tirumala hills and at the Sri Venkateswara University.

Based on separate complaints made by the Hospital Superintendent Abdul Salam and duty doctors, the Alipiri police arrested the nuns, the sources added.

The Specified Authority, the highest decision making body of the TTD, had urged the state government, two days ago to enact a law prohibiting propagation of any religion or faith on the sacred hills of Tirumala except Hindu dharmic activities and Venkateswara Vaibhavam.

The authority also sought a penal provision for violation of the proposed law with imprisonment upto two years and Rs 2,000 as fine.

Meanwhile, activists of BJYM, BJP and Dharma Parirakshana Samithi (DPS), staged a dharna in front of the Hospital Superintendent’s chamber, protesting against the alleged ‘conversion’ activities. — UNI

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Puberty at six!

Patna, June 26
A six-year-old boy with all the traits of an adult— moustache, beard and muscle power to lift a person of 70 kgs — is making waves here.

Doctors attributed Abhishek’s (name changed) puberty and ‘unlimited’ physical endurance to some serious hormonal imbalance.

The boy emerged as the star attraction at Janata Darbar held by Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.

Born in 2000, the boy weighs 28 kg and looks normal at first glance but his fully developed sex organs and other signs of puberty had left everybody amazed.

The boy’s father Pramod Singh said that Abhishek’s growth was normal till the age of three but soon after his appetite started increasing. Growth of hair on the chest and cheeks was noticed simultaneously as he started consuming food comparable to an adult in volume, Mr Pramod Singh said adding that change in behaviour was also marked.

Meanwhile, Mr Nitish Kumar has directed the health secretary to constitute a medical board for a detailed study on the boy. — UNI

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SC refuses to stay UP Speaker’s ruling
Legal Correspondent

New Delhi, June 26
The Supreme Court today declined to stay the order of Uttar Pradesh Assembly Speaker disqualifying five MLAs of Loktantrik Bahujan Dal (LBD), a breakaway group of the BSP, led by Mayawati, which had latter merged with ruling Samajwadi Party.

The five MLAs were disqualified by the Speaker recently as they had chosen to return to the BSP after the Allahabad High Court’s February 28 order, directing the presiding officer to decide the entire issue of BSP split, formation of separate political outfit BLD by the breakaway group of 42 MLAs and its subsequent merger with SP.

A vacation Bench of the apex court, comprising Mr Justice A R Lakshmanan and Mr Justice Altamas Kabir, refused to pass any interim stay order on Speaker’s ruling, saying since the matter had been referred to a larger Bench, which had posted further hearing on the issue on July 14, the stay application would only be heard by the same.

The Bench further directed all the parties to file their replies to the stay application moved by the five MLAs within 10 days.

Senior advocate P P Rao, appearing for the disqualified legislators, pleaded that the interim stay be granted against the Speaker’s order as he had gone ahead with the decision on the issue when a restraint order was passed by the apex court on March 24.

This was contested by UP Government counsel Rakesh Dwivedi, who said that the restraint order was passed by the apex court with regard to deciding the issue by the Speaker as per the High Court order regarding BSP split, formation of BLD by the breakaway group and its merger with SP not any other issue.

In the case of the five MLAs, their application seeking recognition as BSP members and restraining the Speaker to take any action against them, had been rejected by the apex court on March 24 itself.

Since their return to BSP was a new development independent of the High Court order which was under challenge before the apex court, the Speaker was free to take a decision on the issue of their disqualification as per the anti-defection law as they were neither in the SP, nor in the BLD and nor in the BSP.

The Court also declined to issue an interim direction to Election Commission not to notify any byelection to the five seats falling vacant due to the disqualification of these MLAs when Rao made a request to this effect.

The U P Government counsel said that the Election Commission has already made it clear that there would be no byelection in the state as it was going to polls next year.

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‘Nizam’ to pay $700,000 mehr to third wife
Tribune News Service

Hyderabad, June 26
The eighth Nizam of Hyderabad Prince Mukarram Jah will have to pay a small fortune to his estranged third wife Manolya Onur following a divorce settlement.

A city family court today issued a decree of the divorce settlement providing for payment of $700,000 to Manolya, who is also a former Miss Turkey, towards Mehr.

The prince, who now lives in Turkey, has been asked to pay $15,000 per month towards the maintenance of the third wife and her 15-year-old daughter Niloufer and also towards rent in lieu of the residential accommodation.

The maintenance is payable from February 1996, when Manolya had filed the suit for divorce settlement. She will also be paid $28,000 towards interest on arrears of the rent payable by the Nizam.

Jah and Onur met in Istanbul, and a few months later, their nikaah took place in August 1990, at Chiraan Palace in Hyderabad. The prince gave her talaaq over phone, following his marriage to the 22-year old Moroccan, Jemila.

The family court judge Radhakrishnaiah said the $700,000 Mehr should be paid as one-time settlement, along with interest from February10, 1995. Apart from this, Mukkaram Jah will have to pay $300,000 with interest from February10, 1995, towards the loan he had taken from Manolya, said Manolya’s counsel S.H Prasad.

The decree says that the monthly maintenance will have to be paid till her lifetime or till her re-marriage.

For the purpose of recovery of the money as per the divorce settlement, the palaces of Nizam, Chiran Fort, Chowmohalla and Falaknuma in the city and Cedar Palace in Ooty have been ‘charged’, which in legal parlance means they cannot be sold to anyone. 

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Liberate party from 5-star culture, RSS tells BJP

New Delhi, June 26
Expressing strong disapproval at the way the BJP had grown over the years, the RSS has advised the party to become “cadre-centric” and liberate itself from the “malice of five-star culture,” offering the services of five to seven senior ‘pracharaks’ to take the saffron party ‘back to the basics.’

The advice was tendered to the BJP leadership during the meeting of top RSS and BJP leaders that took place at the residence of former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s residence last week, a RSS leader, who was present at the meeting, said.

He said the RSS leaders had “bluntly” told the BJP that “though it was difficult to achieve this goal and it would be a time-consuming process, it was the only way to make the party ride back to power at the Centre once again.”

The RSS has offered to lend five to seven pracharaks to the BJP to execute its plan and take the party “back to the basics”. These pracharaks, who are barred from taking part in electoral politics, will join the BJP team during the next two to three months.

If the BJP feels that these pracharaks should fight elections, than they will have to give up their RSS position to contest the polls, the leader said.

“The RSS is happy that its advice on leaving the decision making process to the 'Core Group' of the BJP and involving senior leaders like Dr Murli Manohar Joshi, who had been relegated to back seat during the tenures of M Venkaiah Naidu and L K Advani, has been accepted. Dr Joshi was entrusted the task of coordinating the week-long protests at Jammu against the genocides carried aginst the Hindu population in Doda and Udhampur districts by the terrorist elements,” he said.

However, officially, both sides maintain that the discussions were without any fixed agenda and the outcome was not to be disclosed publicly.

Among those who attended the meeting included Leaders of Opposition in both Houses of Parliament L.K. Advani and Jaswant Singh, BJP President Rajnath Singh, former BJP Presidents Murli Manohar Joshi and M. Venkaiah Naidu, and senior leaders like Vijay Kumar Malhotra and Sushma Swaraj besides General Secretary Sanjay Joshi from the BJP and RSS General Secretary Mohan Bhagawat and Joint General Secretaries Madan Das Devi, Suresh Soni and Suresh Joshi. — UNI

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Thomas award for Agnivesh

Bangalore, June 26
Noted human rights activist Swami Agnivesh has been selected for this year's prestigious M.A.Thomas National Human Rights Award, instituted by the Vigil India Movement, in recognition of his contribution to protection of human rights.

Informing this to newspersons here today, the movement Trustee, Mr Justice P.P. Bopanna said the award carried a purse of Rs 1 lakh and a citation.

The three-member jury comprising former Supreme Court Justice K.T. Thomas, former Karnataka High Court Justice Bopanna and former Indian Ambassador to Australia Akber Mirza Khalili, selected Swami Agnivesh from among 50 entries, he said.

Swami Agnivesh, the former Chairperson of the United Nations Trust Fund on Contemporary Forms of Slavery, had been in the forefront of agitation against bonded and child labour. He had led an anti-liquor

movement, which forced the Haryana Government to introduce prohibition. He had toured across the country to promote self-confidence and awareness among the vulnerable sections of the society.

The award would be presented at a function in Thiruvananthapuram during the first week of August. —UNI

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Rane’s son booked for rash driving

Mumbai, June 26
Nilesh Rane, son of Maharashtra Revenue Minister Narayan Rane, was booked for negligent driving after his car hit and injured a policeman at Carter Road in suburban Khar, a senior police official said.

Mumbai Police Commissioner A.N Roy said a case has been registered against Nilesh and added that the Constable who was injured sustained minor injury on his lips.

Police sources identified the injured Constable as Bhagwan Jadhav and said that he was returning from duty when the accident took place last night. —PTI 

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Communal violence Bill: states views sought
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, June 26
To avoid any rift between the Centre and the state governments over the provisions of the Communal Violence (Prevention, Control and Rehabilitation of Victims) Bill ,2005,the parliamentary standing committee on Home has sought the comments of experts, state governments and major political parties on the Bill.

Ms Sushma Swaraj, is heading the committee and Congress MP Rahul Gandhi is a member.

The committee is also understood to have sought comments on the Bill from Fali Nariman, Justice Jaspal Singh (who had dealt with several riots cases), Prof. Zoya Hasan of Jawaharlal Nehru University and Prof N.P.Singh of Delhi University.

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Programme to combat AIDS to be launched today
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, June 26
The Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports is all set to launch ‘YUVA’ (Youth United for Victory on AIDS), an ambitious programme involving more than two crore volunteers from seven national youth organisations.

The theme of the five-year programme is that ‘Youth take charge to defeat AIDS’. According to sources in the Ministry, the participation of youth in combating AIDS is imperative as nearly one-third of the reported AIDS cases in India are in the age-group of 15 to 29.

The Vice-President Bhairon Singh Shekhawat will inaugurate the programme at Vigyan Bhawan on Tuesday by launching a web-based quiz developed by the ministry with help from quiz master Siddharth Basu.

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Child abuse case: British national’s plea admitted

Mumbai, June 26
The Bombay High Court today admitted an appeal filed by British nationals Duncan Grant and Alan Waters, challenging a Sessions Court order sentencing them to six years rigorous imprisonment on charges of child abuse.

Their appeal was admitted by Justice Dilip Bhosale after defence lawyer Majeed Memon said he was not pressing for bail for the two accused at this stage.

On March 18, both were sentenced to six years rigorous imprisonment for sexually exploiting children at the shelter-houses run by them in Mumbai and neighbouring Murud.

The court had also imposed a fine of 20,000 UK Pounds each on them, to be paid in Indian rupees at the current exchange rate. The third accused, Indian national William D’Souza, was sentenced to three years RI for abetting the crime.

The court also ruled that out of the fine realised from the accused, Rs 5 lakh each should be paid to two victim boys who had testified against the accused and the rest of the money should be used for rehabilitation of other children. — PTI

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Ex-Naxalite weds tribesman

Nagpur, Jun 25
A jailed Naxalite Sunita, who had surrendered in November last year, today tied the knot with a tribesman as Gadchiroli police persons played host to over 300 baratis.

“Yes, Sunita today got married to a tribal farmer Pravesh Madavi (24) at the Sarakka temple in Alapalli area of Gadchiroli district and not only the locals but the entire police force was jubilant over the wedding”, Additional SP, C. H. Stalin told PTI.

Availing of the Maharashtra government’s surrender policy she gave up arms. A native of Lingampalli, she was forcibly inducted into Jimalgatta Dalam by Dalam commander Anand four years back. After serving for four years, she developed some health problems and was admitted to a local hospital in nearby Bijapur, Stalin said.

During her stay at the hospital, she expressed her desire to her parents to surrender and accordingly gave up arms before Bastar (Chattisgarh) police on November 23. Later shewas handed over to Gadchiroli police.

SP Shirish Jain and Stalin came to know of her willingness to join the mainstream and arranged for her wedding, he added. — PTI

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Police opens fire at protesters

Warangal (AP), June 26
The police today opened fire in the air to disperse a violent crowd protesting against the murder of a candidate contesting in the local bodies election at Guduru, about 75 km from here.

Congress rebel candidate K Illiah, contesting for the Guduru Zilla Parishad Territorial Constituency (ZPTC), was murdered in the wee hours today by unknown persons while he was sleeping in the party office, the police said.

The supporters of Illiah burnt a police vehicle and damaged some shops.

The police opened five rounds of fire in the air to control the crowd and prohibitory orders have been imposed in Gundur as a precautionary measure following the tension. — PTI

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N.S. Ramaswamy appointed Professor

New Delhi, June 26
Noted management specialist N.S. Ramaswamy, eminent professor of political jurisprudence M.V. Pylee and socialist Veena Mazumdar have been appointed as National Research Professors for their unique contribution in their respective fields.

Persons of eminence who have attained the age of 65 years and who have made outstanding contribution in their respective fields and are still capable of further productive research are considered for appointment as National Research Professors.

Their appointments have been made on the recommendation of a high-power committee under the National Research Professorship Scheme comprising Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and the Ministers of HRD, Finance and Home.

Ramaswamy, a founder Director of IIM, Bangalore, researched and applied management science concepts and techniques to hitherto neglected sectors of economic and social life as political system and rural development. —PTI

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Govt for probe mechanism for NCM
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, June 26
Aimed at providing more power to the National Commission for Minorities (NCM), the Centre is considering proposals to equip it with an investigation mechanism of its own.

Presently, the NCM’s powers are restricted to issuing directions to police, state and district authorities to investigate complaints of religious rights violations.

It was pointed out that only four of its reports have been tabled in Parliament since the NCM came into being in 1978 owing to delays in investigations recommended by the commission.

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Krishmamurty in New Jersey's "Who's Who"

New Delhi, June 26
Former Election Commissioner G.V. G.Krishnamurty figures in an American publication as "world's most distinguished individuals".

New Jersey's "Who's Who in the World" in its edition for 2007 has listed Mr Krishnamurty's profile documenting the lives of the world's eminent persons for their reference audience, said a press note from the All- India Conference of Intellectuals quoting a communication from the American publishers.

The contributions of Mr Krishnamurthy as EC from 1993-99 in the conduct of elections in Jammu and Kashmir and several other measures seem to have been taken into account for his inclusion in the publication, it said. — PTI

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Namwar is Hindi varsity Chancellor
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, June 26
Noted Hindi critic Dr Namwar Singh has been appointed Chancellor of the Mahatma Gandhi International Hindi University in Gujarat.

Dr Singh, who was recently honoured with the 'Bharat Bharati' Award, has been appointed Chancellor by the President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, who is the ex-officio visitor of the university.

A former Professor at the Jawaharlal Nehru University, Dr Singh will assume office of the Chancellor, which fell vacant after the death of Dr Nirmal Verma recently.

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