|N A T I O N|
|Pak, India agree on
NEW DELHI, Oct 20 India and Pakistan have found areas of agreement in the set of proposals on the confidence-building measures made by the two sides at the Foreign Secretary-level talks concluded on October 18 in Islamabad, official sources said.
DANICS officers' stir
NEW DELHI, Oct 20 Chief Election Commissioner M.S. Gill has expressed concern over the "agitation by the DANICS officers and said the Central and the Delhi Governments should try to resolve it for the smooth conduct of the assembly poll in Delhi on November 25.
|Laloo ready to help CBI
PATNA, Oct 20 The Rashtriya Janata Dal president, Mr Laloo Prasad Yadav, today said that he would fully cooperate with the CBI during tomorrows interrogation in the fodder scam case though the investigating agency had refused to entertain his request for sending him a questionnaire.
|12 govt officials convicted in
graft, other cases
NEW DELHI, Oct 20 Seventeen persons, including 12 government officials, have been convicted in 12 graft and other cases probed by the CBI, the agency said here today.
powers for PCI opposed
forces given free hand
team to assess damage in Karnataka
blast ministers house
against crackers to be intensified
Pak, India agree on certain
NEW DELHI, Oct 20 India and Pakistan have found areas of agreement in the set of proposals on the confidence-building measures (CBMs) made by the two sides at the Foreign Secretary-level talks concluded on October 18 in Islamabad, official sources said.
New Delhi and Islamabad will now start working on these proposals which would be taken up by the two sides in the first half of February next year when the Foreign Secretaries of India and Pakistan meet here, sources said.
The joint press statement, issued at the conclusion of talks in Islamabad on October 18, said" The meeting on October 16, 1998, discussed issues of peace and security, including CBMs. Both sides underscored their commitment to reduce the risk of a conflict by building mutual confidence in the nuclear and conventional fields."
India had offered to expand the Indo-Pak agreement on non-attack on each others nuclear installations by including civilian targets in its list of CBMs, sources said.
From the Indian side, five broad proposals were made during the discussions on peace and security. These included exchange of views on security concepts and nuclear doctrines, nuclear and conventional confidence-building measures (CBMs), increased information exchange leading to greater transparency and predictability, developing communication links and setting up a consultative mechanism for a periodic review of the implementation of the CBMs.
The sources said under the increased information exchange category, the proposal was for getting seismic data if any kind of testing was done. Under the same category, notification would have to be given in advance in case of the two countries was to undertake flight testing of ballistic missiles.
The sources said New Delhi felt that the Islamabad round of talks was a "small but definite step towards generating trust and confidence and improving the security environment in the region."
The sources said India
wanted a friendly and stable relationship with Pakistan.
This had been made amply clear by Foreign Secretary K.
Raghunath to the Pakistani side during his discussions in
Laloo ready to help CBI
PATNA, Oct 20 (PTI) The Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) president, Mr Laloo Prasad Yadav, today said that he would fully cooperate with the CBI during tomorrows interrogation in the fodder scam case though the investigating agency had refused to entertain his request for sending him a questionnaire.
"I had requested the CBI to send me a questionnaire to enable me to come fully prepared to answer, but the same was not permitted", Mr Yadav told reporters.
The former Bihar Chief Minister said he would extend his full cooperation to the agency in the examination in the disproportionate assets case of the fodder scam.
He criticised the investigating agency for conducting raids on Chief Minister Rabri Devis official residence and her relatives and claimed that "nothing objectionable was found".
He said he and his wife and other family members, who were income tax assessees, had already filed returns detailing their sources of income and had disputed some of the objections raised by the Income Tax Department.
"The CBI is now free to ask questions....I am ready to respond them any number of times", Mr Yadav said.
Refusing to comment on the justification of the registration of a fresh disproportionate assets case against him, he said he was ready to fight it in the court of law.
Claiming that he and his family members had not accumulated wealth disproportionate to their known sources of income, the former Chief Minister reposed full faith in the judiciary.
The CBI had on October 9
summoned Mr Yadav for interrogation in connection with a
case relating to accumulation of wealth worth around Rs
50 lakh, allegedly disproportionate to his known sources
DANICS officers' stir alarms Gill
NEW DELHI, Oct 20 (UNI) Chief Election Commissioner M.S. Gill has expressed concern over the "agitation by the DANICS officers and said the Central and the Delhi Governments should try to resolve it for the smooth conduct of the assembly poll in Delhi on November 25.
In a long letter to Home Minister Lal Krishan Advani, Dr Gill has said the agitation has affected work relating to the conduct of the elections. Granting of revised grades on the lines of the Fifth Pay Commission as being sought by the DANICS might be "misunderstood" before the elections. While negotiations might go on, the question relating to new grades should be addressed after December 1 when the poll would be concluded, he said.
The Chief Secretary to the NCT of Delhi should make it clear to the DANICS Association and obtain a commitment to conduct the "national duty of holding elections". The commission should be informed by October 22 on the action being taken by the government as suggested by the commission. It would meet on October 23 to decide an alternative arrangements if necessary, to ensure free, fair and clean elections, Dr Gill said.
But when the Delhi elections were only five weeks away, continuing uncertainty was disturbing the level-playing field, he said, adding the agitation by the DANICS officers had given a setback to the preparation of electoral rolls.
Notwithstanding the initial criticism by the BJP and the Congress on his suggestion for neutral administration in the four states going to the polls next month, he said such administration was possible even at the Centre in the run-up to General Election.
"In not too distant a future, we will have to accept this idea to make the poll process transparent," Mr Gill said in reply to a question.
The CEC also supported a change in the electoral system from the first-past-the-post to majoritarian system where the winning candidate must get more than 50 per cent votes polled, if necessary, through a run-off poll.
972 blank original passports
NEW DELHI, Oct 20 The special cell of the Delhi police today claimed to have busted a fake passport racket and seized 972 blank original passports reportedly stolen from the Regional Passport Office at Ghaziabad.
The cell received a tip off that a travel agent of Delhi, Ashok Jatana, was looking for customers for selling original passports. A deal was struck through a decoy customer who promised to pay Rs 30,000 for a passport on October 9 near Moti Bagh in south-west Delhi. A trap was laid and the suspect arrested, Deputy Commissioner of Police (Special Cell) Ashok Chand said.
During interrogation the suspect disclosed that he was running an export house which had to be closed due to heavy losses. He started working as a travel agent and came in contact with Riyaz Khan, who operated as a tout in the Regional Passport Office (RPO) in Ghaziabad in UP and Bhikaji Cama Place in Delhi. However, he did not disclose the whereabouts of Riyaz Khan.
The police obtained information that Riyaza Khan used a white Ambassador car (DL-3CE-9744). His vehicle was spotted near the Passport Office, Bhikaji Cama Place, on October 16. The vehicle was intercepted and Khan held. Two blank original passports were recovered from his possession, the DCP said.
During interrogation, Riyaz Khan disclosed that he along with Mujib Rehman said Shyam Mohan had stolen a wooden box from the storeroom of the RPO in Ghaziabad on the intervening night of October 1 and October 2 in connivance with an employee.
He obtained a sketch of the key of the storeroom on the basis of which he got made a duplicate key. He took Mujib Rehman, Shyam Mohan and a locksmith for committing the theft at the RPO in Ghaziabad.
Riyaz Khan kept with him all stolen passports. A total of 962 passports and a cash of Rs 27,000 were recovered from his hideout in Savitri Nagar in South Delhi.
12 govt officials convicted in graft, other cases
NEW DELHI, Oct 20 (PTI) Seventeen persons, including 12 government officials, have been convicted in 12 graft and other cases probed by the CBI, the agency said here today.
The CBI said five government officials caught demanding and accepting bribes had been recently convicted by various courts.
In one of the cases, a senior Audit Officer in the office of the Comptroller and Auditor General of India at Chandigarh was sentenced to three years' rigorous imprisonment, while a Works Inspector in the Railways in Calcutta was sentenced to two years' rigorous imprisonment, the CBI added.
In another case, an officer in charge in Mancheswar Workshop of the Railways at Bhubaneswar was sentenced to one year rigorous imprisonment.
A senior script writer in the Films Division in Calcutta was also awarded the same sentence and a time keeper in Bharat Cooking Coal Ltd at Dhanbad was sentenced to rigorous imprisonment for two years, it said.
In another case, a manager of Indian Overseas Bank in Bangalore, was sentenced to rigorous imprisonment for three years with a fine of Rs 5,000 for abusing discretionary powers and sanctioning agricultural loans to fictitious persons, it said.
Purulia arms seized?
NEW DELHI, Oct 20 With the arrest of three members of a gang of suspected criminals, the Delhi police claims to have recovered arms and ammunition which could have been part of the consignment dropped a few years back at Purulia, in West Bengal.
According to the Deputy Commissioner of Police, Mr Satyendra Garg, a police party arrested three persons at Bharola last night.
They reportedly fired twice at the police party before being arrested. A .38 Webley Scott revolver, two country made weapons of .315 bore and a few empty and live cartridges were recovered from them.
The suspects, Chander Jha and Mohammad Chhutan belong to Bihar while Jawahar Singh from the Shalimar Bagh area of Delhi. When their premises were searched a huge cache of arms and ammunition were recovered which they had reportedly brought from Bihar.
During interrogation the
suspects said that Chander Jha and his accomplices were
reportedly involved in a murder case committed in Adarsh
Nagar in June this year. They also committed a robbery in
the Model Town area where an employee of Sahara India was
robbed of Rs 1,800 near Chhatrasal Stadium, the DCP said.
More powers for PCI opposed
NEW DELHI, Oct 20 (UNI) The government is of the view that the print and electronic media are two separate entities and therefore the Press Council of India should not be given more powers to cover both of them.
Information and Broadcasting Ministry sources told UNI that there was need for a separate broadcasting authority to cover the electronic media, and this would be set up under the Broadcast Bill proposed to be brought before Parliament in the winter session.
However, the council has been asked by the government to specify the kind of teeth it should be given in the present situation to effectively tackle cases that fall within its ambit under the statute.
This had been conveyed to the members of the council during their meeting with Mrs Sushma Swaraj when she was the Information and Broadcasting Minister. The members had wanted the council to be made more effective with greater penal powers.
Meanwhile, the ministry has commenced the process of revamping various units under it to make them more effective. The ministry has written to the Public Enterprises Selection Board (PESB) about the panel sent by it to the government for the posts of Chairperson and Managing Director of the National Film Development Corporation (NFDC) which has been recognised as a mini-Ratna.
The Indian Institute of
Mass Communications (IIMC) and the Central Board of Film
Certification (CBFC), which was given a new Chairperson
in film actress Asha Parekh some time ago, have also been
reconstituted. Former Films Division chief producer N.
Chandra has been appointed Chairman of the Film and
Television Institute of India (FTII) in Mumbai. The
Satyajit Ray FTII in Calcutta is also being
Security forces given free hand
AGARTALA, Oct 20 (PTI) Army and para-military forces have been given free hand in Tripura to deal with insurgency without any interference from the state machinery, Chief Secretary V. Thulasidas has said.
Not only the police, but all security agencies, who were fighting insurgency in Tripura, had been given a free hand to tackle the situation, Mr Thulasidas, who is also the Chairman of the State-Level Co-ordination Committee (SLCC) to monitor anti-insurgency operations, told reporters here last night.
The Chief Secretary refuted the charges levelled by political parties that the state had been interfering with the work of security forces. The SLCC was working in tandem with all agencies, he said adding, We are all unanimous in the matter of dealing with insurgency problems in the state.
The security forces were
doing a very hard job in fighting militancy,
the SLCC Chairman said. On the fate of surrendered
extremists, he said many steps had been taken to socially
and economically rehabilitate them.
Separate team to assess damage in Karnataka
NEW DELHI, Oct 20 (UNI) The Prime Minister, Mr Atal Behari Vajpayee, has agreed to despatch a separate central team for the assessment of damage caused by the floods in Karnataka even as the BJP has sought a release of Rs 100 crore outside Calamity Relief Funds (CRF) for the state to tide over the crisis.
The Karnataka unit BJP chief, Mr B.S. Yediyurappa, told mediapersons here that Prime Minister had already announced Rs 50 crore to the state and had promised more money on the receipt of reports from the central team. The assessment team for Karnataka would be separate because the Centre wanted an early report.
He said it was due to the BJPs efforts that the Prime Minister undertook the aerial survey of the affected talukas of Gulbarga and Bidar districts on October 18 and the handling of the whole affair by the Karnataka Government was found to be very shabby. The state government sent a letter seeking central assistance only after the Prime Ministers Office sought a report.
Two judges quit
MUMBAI, Oct 20 (PTI) Two judges of the Mumbai High Court, Mr Justice Y.S. Jahagirdar and Mr Justice A.Y. Sakhare, have submitted their resignations to the President.
Official sources said yesterday that the letters had been forwarded to the President. However, the judges have not cited any reason for resigning.
Under Article 217 of the Constitution, any sitting judge of a high court can resign by simply writing a letter to the President.
Both judges were yet to be confirmed and had more than 18 years of service left. Mr Justice Jahagirdar this month shared a Division Bench headed by Chief Justice M.B. Shah which heard several public interest litigations.
Mr Justice Sakhare also shared a Division Bench with Mr Justice B.P. Saraf and heard public interest petitions.
Naxals blast ministers house
HYDERABAD, Oct 20 (UNI) Naxalites of the banned Peoples War Group (PWG) blasted the house of Andhra Pradesh Excise Minister M Venkateswara Rao and extremists shot dead two persons, including a Upa sarpanch of the ruling Telugu Desam Party (TDP), in three separate incidents since last night. The police said PWG naxalites blasted the house of Mr Rao at Dharmaram village in Nizamabad district early today. A contingent from the special police and grey hounds, who were combing the forest areas under Ditchpally police station limits, rushed to the spot.
Drive against crackers to be
NEW DELHI, Oct 20 Encouraged by the overwhelming response of schoolchildren to their appeal not to use crackers, Natures Soul, a local voluntary organisation, now aims at making the campaign even more effective.
Mr Sanjeev Walia, director of Natures Soul, said here today that the special exercise was scheduled for Saturday. He said student representatives and heads of 100 odd public and private schools were expected to participate.
Mr Walia said each school would be given five minutes to air its views on the effectiveness of the campaign which started on August 25.
Prithvi Theatre festival
MUMBAI, Oct 20 (PTI) Six theatre groups from Italy, Hungary, Germany, the United Kingdom, France and Poland are scheduled to perform at the 22-day Prithvi Theatre Festival 98 here from November 1.
The theme of the festival
is Theatre of Europe and will give the
audience a perspective of different aspects of
contemporary European theatre. The festival programme
includes film screenings at Prithvi Theatre and platform
performances before each show. In addition, two groups
will also perform at outdoor venues.
|Journalist shot dead
MODINAGAR (Ghaziabad): A senior journalist of a Hindi daily was shot dead by unidentified assailants here on Monday night. Two miscreants entered the house of Mr Rajesh Tyagi (45), at 10.45 p.m. and fired at him from close range. He died on the spot. Mr Tyagi was a senior journalist with Dainik Jagran and president of the District Journalists Association. PTI
11 ITBP men killed
Gas leak at
CPM leader shot
Stamp on Acharya
| Haryana | Himachal Pradesh | Jammu & Kashmir | Chandigarh |
| Editorial | Business | Stocks | Sport |
| Mailbag | Spotlight | World | 50 years of Independence | Weather |
| Search | Subscribe | Archive | Suggestion | Home | E-mail |