A T E S T N E W S
Coalgate: Govt panel recommends deallocation of four mines
NEW DELHI: The inter-ministerial group (IMG) on coal blocks allocation has recommended de-allocation of four mines allotted to private firms and encashment of bank guarantee of three others on the ground of non-development of mines within a prescribed time.
"The IMG, which reviewed eight cases on Wednesday has recommended de-allocation of four coal blocks including two alloted to private firm Field Mining and Ispat," a coal ministry official, who did not wish to be named, said.
Field Mining and Ispat was slapped a show cause along with 58 others for delay in development of Chinora and Warora Southern Part coal blocks in Maharashtra.
This is the first recommendation by the IMG ever since controversy broke out over the allocation of coal blocks after the recent CAG report that criticised the government for allotting them in a non-transparent manner.
The IMG had scrutinised eight cases on Wednesday in a marathon six-hour meeting out of a total 29 reviewed by it last week in the context of why production had not started within the prescribed timeline.
It had heard representatives of 29 coal block allottees on September 6, 7 and 8 out of of 58 allocations under focus.
Meanwhile, coal minister Sriprakash Jaiswal told reporters that he was hopeful that the IMG would submit its first report by September 17, two days after the September 15 deadline set earlier.
"I am hopeful that IMG will submit its report by September 17," Jaiswal said. — PTI
Yemeni protesters storm US embassy in Sanaa
SANAA: Yemeni protesters, angry over a film mocking Islam, on Thursday stormed the complex of the US embassy in Sanaa, defying efforts by riot police to hold them at bay, an AFP correspondent said.
Protesters torched a number of diplomatic vehicle as security forces used water cannons and warning shots in a bid to drive them out.
Police had earlier fired warning shots to disperse few thousands of protesters as they approached the main gate of the mission.
"O, Allah's messenger... O, Mohammed," protesters chanted.
The attack comes two days after four Americans including the ambassador were killed when a Libyan mob attacked the US consulate in Benghazi, and protesters in Cairo tore down the Stars and Stripes and replaced it with a black Islamic flag.
The low-budget movie, "Innocence of Muslims" in which actors have strong American accents, portrays Muslims as immoral and gratuitously violent.
It pokes fun at the Prophet Mohammed and touches on themes of paedophilia and homosexuality, while showing him sleeping with women, talking about killing children and referring to a donkey as "the first Muslim animal."
Kandahar hijack suspect arrested in J&K
JAMMU: Mehraj-ud-din Dand, a terrorist wanted for his involvement in the hijacking of flight IC-814 flight to Kandahar and other terror attacks, has been arrested by the Jammu and Kashmir
Police, a senior police official said on Thursday.
The terrorist, suspected to be involved in many militancy related incidents in India and abroad, was arrested from an undisclosed location on the Jammu-Srinagar National Highway on Wednesday night, the official said.
On Dec 24, 1999, IC-814, with 176 passengers on board, was hijacked by five Pakistani militants and forced to land in three different airports — Amritsar, Lahore, and Dubai - before being taken to Kandahar, the bastion of the Taliban regime in Afghanistan. In Dubai, Rupin Katyal, one of the passengers, was fatally stabbed by the hijackers.
The aircraft had to spend a week on the tarmac in Kandahar before terrorists were swapped for the hostages. — IANS
Media should avoid desire to be
KOCHI: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has said the media should avoid the desire to be sensational and exercise restraint so that nothing that divides society and country is written, broadcast or telecast.
The media has a very important role to play in promoting greater communal harmony and inter-group and inter-community dialogue and its reporting and opinions should be "fair, objective and balanced", Singh said.
"The desire to be sensational should be avoided even though it is very tempting sometimes. Restraint should be exercised so that nothing that divides our society and country is written, broadcast or telecast", he said inaugurating golden jubilee celebrations of Kerala Union of Working Journalists.
Singh's advice to the media against sensationalism came while referring to the recent violence in Assam and its reverberations in other parts of the country which saw exodus of north-easterners back to their home states.
"Today our country is going through difficult times. The unfortunate incidents of the past few months have brought out worrying faultlines in our society", he said.
Singh said the tragic developments in Assam and their reverberations in Mumbai, Pune, Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad and other places have shown that "We cannot afford to take social peace and harmony for granted".
He emphasised the need to be constantly vigilant and work continuously towards promoting greater communal harmony and inter-group and inter-community dialogue.
Prefacing his advice to the media, he said, "We are proud that freedom of expression is a constitutional guarantee in India. The media in our country is not just a reliable barometer of public opinion; it is also the conscience-keeper of our nation." — PTI
Decision on Third Front only after
Lok Sabha poll: Mulayam
KOLKATA: A Third Front will be formed only after the Lok Sabha poll, Samajwadi Party (SP) chief Mulayam Singh Yadav said on Thursday.
A day after senior SP leaders stated that the party had sown the seeds of the Third Front, Mulayam Singh said: "Third Front is always formed only after the Lok Sabha
poll after taking stock of the political situation. It is never formed before the
He was addressing a press conference at the end of the two-day meeting of the party here.
SP general secretary Mohan Singh had said on Wednesday that the party had sown the seeds of Third Front and "now they have to be nurtured". — IANS