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Team Kejriwal protests hike in power tariff
New Delhi, September 23
Team Kejriwal looks all set for its electoral debut in the forthcoming Delhi Assembly elections next year as it launched a non-cooperation campaign today in protest against the Delhi government's latest hike in electricity prices and restrictions imposed on the supply of coking gas.

Man jumps off train to nab snatcher
New Delhi, September 23
In a freak incident, a 42-year-old man jumped off a running train near Ashram flyover to nab a snatcher on Friday.

Water privatisation: Govt approves; RWAs disapprove
New Delhi, September 23
After several failed attempts in the past, the water distribution system in the city is likely to undergo a complete transformation with the state government approving the privatisation of its management in Malviya Nagar, Vasant Vihar and Mehrauli of South Delhi amid protests of Resident Welfare Associations (RWAs).


EARLIER STORIES



2 girls raped by friends
New Delhi, September 23
Two girls have been allegedly raped by their two friends in Alipur on Friday night. One of the accused has been arrested.





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Team Kejriwal protests hike in power tariff
Ananya Panda
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, September 23
Team Kejriwal looks all set for its electoral debut in the forthcoming Delhi Assembly elections next year as it launched a non-cooperation campaign today in protest against the Delhi government's latest hike in electricity prices and restrictions imposed on the supply of coking gas.

While the fledgling political group kept itself grounded with Arvind, Manish and Gopal Rai were seen discussing the people's concerns, the protest of India Against Corruption (IAC) against the hike in electricity prices, evoked a good response with the residents of various parts of the Capital setting their power bills afire at Jantar Mantar.

As activists accused the private discoms of looting the people by burdening them with increased taxes, representatives of several RWAs also extended their support with banners that read anti-government slogans.

Satinder Singh who runs an air conditioning business from Model Town was charged Rs 920 for consumption of one unit which, he said, was a rise by more than 10 times.

Similarly Shailendra Gaur, accompanied by 50 to 60 people from Shahdara, said, "My electricity charges which used to be Rs 3,500 for two months have jumped to Rs 7,100."

Alleging a nexus between the Delhi government and the private power companies-North Delhi Power Limited (NDPL) and Bombay Suburban Electric Supply (BSES) which are given concessions while the residents are at the receiving end, Arvind Kejriwal said the tariff was increased in July even as the Delhi Electricity Regulatory Commission (DERC), during the tenure of its chairman Berjinder Singh, had recommended a 23 per cent reduction in prices.

Kejriwal urged the people not to pay the electricity charges of the last two months.

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Man jumps off train to nab snatcher
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, September 23
In a freak incident, a 42-year-old man jumped off a running train near Ashram flyover to nab a snatcher on Friday.

Surender Singh Chauhan, who hails from Faridabad, was travelling on Taj Express when a youth snatched his mobile phone and purse. A scuffle ensued between them in which the youth dropped Surender's purse but jumped off the train with the mobile phone. Two other youths also jumped from the train and are believed to be the snatcher's associates.

"Surender also followed them and managed to catch hold of the youth with the help of railway police personnel deployed nearby. The stolen mobile phone was recovered from his possession," said a police official.

He was later identified as Sanjay, 20, a resident of Bhagwan Nagar in Maharani Bagh. A case of assault and theft has been lodged against him at the Hazrat Nizammuddin police station.

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Water privatisation: Govt approves; RWAs disapprove
Himani Chandel
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, September 23
After several failed attempts in the past, the water distribution system in the city is likely to undergo a complete transformation with the state government approving the privatisation of its management in Malviya Nagar, Vasant Vihar and Mehrauli of South Delhi amid protests of Resident Welfare Associations (RWAs).

A pilot project for the private distribution of water in these areas has been sanctioned by the Delhi Jal Board (DJB).

The Malviya Nagar area is being handed over to a consortium of SPML Infra and French MNC Suez Degremont, one of the world's largest water corporations which are already running the Sonia Vihar water treatment plant in Delhi. A combine of SPML Infra, Tahal Consulting Engineers and Israel's Hagihon Jerusalem Water and Wastewater Works, has been awarded the Mehrauli and Vasant Vihar areas.

The pilot project is said to involve management contracts for water distribution, related repair and maintenance for around 10 years with the fee and other costs to be about Rs 730 crore.

The government has been arguing that the privatization will ensure 24x7 supply and that 
the contract is limited only to the management of water distribution, which was given to some reputed private parties after a tendering process whereas the ownership of all water sources, treatment and distribution assets will remain with the government.

The pilot project in these areas has been kicked off with a promise to extend the scheme to other areas later.

However, the RWAs of the affected areas are vehemently opposing the project.

"The private parties are interested in making profits. They will manage water in terms of its price. Water will become just a commodity," said SP Arya, president, Malviya Nagar RWA.

The approximate water demand of the city is around 3375 MLD (million litres daily) against which the DJB supplies only around 2700 MLD after accounting for all the losses during the treatment and distribution, leaving a shortfall of about 675 MLD.

Though the DJB asserted that all the stakeholders were consulted prior to taking a decision on implementing the privatisation of water projects in these areas, the RWAs have refuted the claims, saying that they were not consulted before taking any decision in the matter.

"We have passed a resolution to stop work on the privatisation of water in our area without first carrying out substantive consultations with all the RWAs through the resident ward committees and municipal councillors," said Satish Upadhya, Councillor, Malviya Nagar.

Earlier in 2005 also, the government tried to privatise water in Delhi and even applied for a loan to the World Bank, but its attempts were foiled by the opposition and trade unions.

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2 girls raped by friends

New Delhi, September 23
Two girls have been allegedly raped by their two friends in Alipur on Friday night. One of the accused has been arrested.

The accused are known to the victims as they live in the same village.

"The accused are as Vicky and Sunil, both school dropouts. The boys allegedly called the victims to their house on Friday evening on the pretext of a party. Vicky offered them soft drinks laced with sedatives. After the girls got under the influence of the sedatives, the boys allegedly raped them," said an official. ó TNS

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