|Friday, September 8, 2000,
derecognises Lok Shakti
undecided about Govindacharya
today on Veerappan
to get AJTs in 2 yrs
DDA locked in 32-yr-long tussle
refutes VHP charges
|CPM worker killed in clash
CALCUTTA, Sept 7 A CPM activist was killed in a clash with Trinamool Congress workers near Keshpur in Midnapore district today. Official sources said the police could not reach the troubled spot in time since the road was dug up.
Stray cattle: HC pulls up Delhi MC
come alive with NHRC help
to consider Manisana proposals
urged to enact law on tourism
Singhs plea to India, Pak
EC derecognises Lok Shakti
NEW DELHI, Sept 7 (UNI) The Election Commission (EC) today announced that it had derecognised the Lok Shakti as a state party in Karnataka and Nagaland following a review of its poll performance in the 1999 general elections.
The party would now function as a registered, unrecognised outfit. It will lose its reserved symbol of a coconut tree bearing fruit and will also not be eligible for free campaign time on All India Radio and Doordarshan during election time, commission sources said.
The decision of the Election Commission, presided over by Chief Election Commissioner M.S. Gill, had been conveyed to the Lok Shakti. The party had also been told to hold its organisational elections and intimate to the Election Commission the list of office-bearers at the earliest.
In its order dated September 6, the commission also held that only a few members of the Lok Shakti along with party chief Ramakrishna Hegde had merged with the Janata Dal (United) and the anti-merger group continued to exist as a separate party by the name of Lok Shakti.
The commission had held a hearing of Lok Shakti representatives on June 23 after sending it a notice, based on its poll performance in 1999.
As per the Election Symbols (Reservation and Allotment) order, 1968, a party to be recognised as a state party had to secure 6 per cent of the votes polled in the state or have one member for every 30 MLAs in the state or one member for every 25 members in the Lok Sabha from the state. Recognition as a state party in four states qualified a party for recognition as a national party.
The Election Commission would hear tomorrow the case of the CPM which stood to lose its status as a national party following its poor performance in Andhra Pradesh in the 1999 elections. The party fulfilled the criteria under the Symbols Order in West Bengal, Tripura, Kerala and Andhra Pradesh prior to the 1999 general elections but slipped in Andhra Pradesh in the last elections.
BJP undecided about
NEW DELHI, Sept 7 Senior party leader K.N. Govindacharya is the cause of the delay in the announcement of the new BJP President Bangaru Laxmans team of office-bearers.
The much awaited list could not be even declared today as senior party leaders, including the RSS, continued to weigh the pros and cons of the impact of dropping Mr Govindacharya from the new list of office-bearers, sources in the party said.
The Prime Minister, Mr Atal Behari Vajpayee, the former party president, Mr Kushabhau Thakre, and the Human Resource Development Minister, Dr Murli Manohar Joshi, have categorically told Mr Laxman that Mr Govindacharya should either be dropped from the list or he should be made a vice-president in the party, sources said.
While Mr Govindacharya, who is considered close to the Union Home Minister, Mr L.K. Advani, and has been a general secretary for about 10 years, had himself expressed a desire to remain out of the list of the office-bearers of the new president, the RSS was said to be of the view that the four-term general secretary should continue in the party.
The RSS is of the view that if Mr Govindacharya was not a general secretary in Mr Laxmans team then it would send a wrong signal to the party and the Sangh cadres, sources said.
The resignation of the former minister and a high profile youth leader, Ms Uma Bharati, is also being linked with Mr Govindacharya. Mr Vajpayee strongly believes that Mr Govindacharya has been instrumental in the resignation of Ms Bharati, who has sent a letter of her resignation from the Lok Sabha to the Prime Minister about a fortnight ago.
Now that Mr Vajpayee has
total control over the party, he told Mr Laxman that Mr
Govindacharya should be cut to size. In this move, Mr
Vajpayee has received direct support from both Dr Joshi
and Mr Thakre.
Decision today on Veerappan
BANGALORE, Sept 7 (UNI) The Karnataka and Tamil Nadu Governments will decide the next course of action tomorrow for securing the safe release of Kannada megastar Rajkumar who along with three others has been held captive by forest brigand Veerappan since July 30.
Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi and a team of officials will arrive here tomorrow by a special flight for the meeting which would review the situation arising out of the abrupt return of emissary R. R. Gopal after his third round of negotiations with the forest brigand.
Briefing newspersons after a high-level meeting, Home Minister Mallikarjun Kharge said Mr Karunanidhi and Karnataka Chief Minister S. M. Krishna would also discuss the action the two states need to take to get the stay granted by the Supreme Court vacated on the release of 121 TADA detenues, said to be associates of Veerappan, in Karnataka, and five Tamil extremists in Tamil Nadu.
Mr Kharge said the
forest brigand was firm in his demand of seeking the
release of detenues and extremists and the two
governments would take necessary steps in this direction
to secure the early release of the hostages.
IAF to get AJTs in 2
NEW DELHI, Sept 7 The first batch of British Hawk advanced jet trainers (AJT) will be available to the Indian Air Force (IAF) in about two years, Air Chief A.Y. Tipnis said here today.
He said the IAF would be purchasing 10 Mirage 2000 fighters from France. Half of them would be twin seaters to meet certain requirements of night vision and handling of various systems.
We have reached the single vendor stage. The process is under way to give a final shape to the agreement proposed to be signed with the British Aerospace and acquisition of Hawk trainers, the Air Chief told reporters after inaugurating a national exposition-cum-seminar on IAF-industry joint venture programme on indigenisation.
Asked how soon the AJT delivery would take place, Air Chief Marshal Tipnis said: it will take at least two years for the delivery to commence.
Stating that the negotiations were in the final stage, he said the matter was now before the price negotiation committee and its technical committee. The issue of supply of spares and other technical aspects were being looked into, he added.
The seminar was organised jointly by the IAF, the Confederation of Indian Industry and the Aeronautical Society of India (AESI).
To a question on achieving the national objective of 70 per cent indigenisation in defence, he said: hopefully we will meet it. The industry, the IAF, the Ministry of Defence, the Defence Research and Development Organisation, AESI and academicians are synergising efforts towards indigenisation.
Regarding cumbersome financial procedures, he said though checks and balances were necessary, time was also an important factor. The decision-making process needed to be made liberal to ensure speedy implementation, he said.
He regretted that the degree of self reliance in the defence sector has not been upto the desirable level and said dependence on import must be reduced as far as spares and maintenance were concerned.
He said steps were being taken to expand the range of indigenisation to include complex, high-tech and high cost items to ensure larger volume of business for the vendors.
Stating that financial returns for the private sector engaged in defence production should be considered, he said: we should think ourselves as strategic partners instead of looking at our ties as vendor-supplier relationship.
KVIC, DDA locked in
NEW DELHI, Sept 7 A Rs 2 crore land scam has come to light in the Capital with prolonged tussle between the Khadi Village Industries and Commission (KVIC) and the Delhi Development Authorities (DDA) over a plot in South Delhi.
According to the Director of the KVIC, Mr Karnail Singh, the trouble had started 32 years ago. The DDA had allotted two acres in a prime locality of Okhla Industrial Area Phase-II in 1968. The KVIC had deposited Rs 20,000 as earnest money at that time and total price of the land was deposited in 1979.
He said the lease deed of the plot was also signed on October 8, 1982 and the possession of the plot was given to the KVIC.
When the KVIC officials went to the site they found that there was no vacant plot. Later they were told that it had been encroached upon by slum dwellers. More than 100 jhuggies had been constructed on the said plot.
The DDA had demanded Rs 10,000 each to remove the jhuggies. The KVIC deposited Rs 12.80 lakh for the same. However, instead of removing the jhuggies, the DDA allegedly intimated the KVIC officials concerned after seven years that jhuggi dwellers had got stay orders from the court. The jhuggies could not be removed, Mr Karnail Singh said.
The DDA further intimated the KVIC officials that the demolition of jhuggies might be taken up with the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) and the deposited amount of Rs 12.80 lakh would be transferred to the slum wing of the MCD.
Finally, the plot was not handed over to the KVIC. The jhuggies were removed and it was occupied by private businessmen. At present, they have their business establishments there, Mr Karnail Singh said.
Mr Karnail Singh, who has recently joined the KVIC said in 1998 the DDA had offered an alternate plot of 1.35 hectare in the same area. The KVIC had accepted this offer.
However, a year later the KVIC was again intimated that the new plot was not in lieu of the earlier one and the KVIC was asked to pay its full price.
Mr Mahabal Mishra, MLA (Congress) and member of the DDA said with the connivance of senior officials of the DDA certain private consultants had developed the land and sold it at a huge premium.
Minister refutes VHP charges
JAIPUR, Sept 7 The Vishwa Hindu Parishad submitted a 10-point memorandum to Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot early this month alleging that the Agriculture Minister, Mr Tayyab Hussain, was involved in anti-national activities.
The memorandum accused Mr Hussain of active involvement in ISI activities in the Mewat area.
Subsequently local newspapers carried a report that the Chief Minister had ordered an inquiry into the allegations made by the VHP in its memorandum. Later, a newspaper reported that the inquiry against the minister had been transferred from the police to the CID and the Deputy Superintendent of Police, Kaman, Mr Prahlad Singh Meena, who is charged of being hand-in-glove with the minister, had been shifted. Another news item said that the minister claimed that Mr Gehlot had ordered inquiry against him on Mr Hussains own request in order to clear suspicion against him since the submission of memorandum.
When contacted Mr Tayyab Hussain categorically denied that any inquiry had been instituted against him. He said yesterday that the government had issued a press note on September 4 clarifying that the state government had not ordered any inquiry against him. He expressed surprise that newspapers had preferred to ignore the press release.
Mr Tayyab Hussain said that the VHP had only made vague charges about his connections with the ISI and did not mention any specific instance to prove his involvement in anti-national activities.
Mr Hussain said that he had been requesting Mr Gehlot for quite some time to transfer the area DSP because of his questionable activities. All charges made against the minister by the VHP related to criminal offences committed by certain persons with whom he has no connection at all, the minister said. He said that he had requested the Chief Minister to order an inquiry into these specific cases so that it may be clarified that he was in no way involved with the accused persons. Only after that the DSP had been transferred and cases handed over to the CID. But this did not mean that the inquiry was being held against him, he added.
CPM worker killed in clash
CALCUTTA, Sept 7 (UNI) A CPM activist was killed in a clash with Trinamool Congress workers near Keshpur in Midnapore district today.
Official sources said the police could not reach the troubled spot in time since the road was dug up.
Meanwhile, the death toll in yesterdays violence at Sihor in Bankura district rose to two with another Trinamool Congress activist succumbing to his injuries.
Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee visited Sihor yesterday. Defence Minister and NDA leader George Fernandes would visit Bankura and Midnapore districts tomorrow.
Meanwhile, West Bengal Chief Minister Jyoti Basu has welcomed the visit of NDA leader George Fernandes to take stock of the law and order situation.
He is welcome. Let him come and see for himself who is creating the terror, Mr Basu said.
He said Mr Fernandes would see during his visit how the Trinamool Congress activists had forced the villagers to flee their homes.
He said his government had received a letter from a Joint Secretary of the Union Home Ministry on the basis of the report submitted by the NDA team that had visited the troubled districts.
Stray cattle: HC pulls up Delhi MC
NEW DELHI, Sept 7 (UNI) The Delhi High Court pulled up the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) again today for its inability to tackle the problem of stray cattle and dogs found loitering in city streets and asked the Director of the state Animal Husbandry Department to explain the governments stand on the issue.
A Division Bench of Mr Justice Anil Dev Singh and Mr Justice M.K. Sharma asked the Director to file the response within two weeks and be present in the court on September 29 for cross-examination.
Veterinary Officer D.R. Ahuja filed a counter-affidavit
saying that stray cows found on roads, streets and parks
were rounded up under Sections 323 and 418 of the Delhi
Municipal Corporation Act, 1957, and sent to cow shelters
run by non-governmental organisations (NGOs). The judges,
however, remained unmoved. Affidavits will not do
any more. Do something. We dont want to see even a
single head of stray cattle in Delhi. Remove them within
four months. We are not concerned with your suggestions.
We want results, they said.
Dead come alive with NHRC help
LUCKNOW, Sept, 7 (UNI) The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has taken up a unique matter in which certain alive persons were shown to be dead in the revenue records to deprive them of their land holdings.
The commission has asked the Uttar Pradesh Chief Secretary to appear before it on September 22 along with the District Magistrate of Azamgarh in this regard.
The matter is being dealt with by the NHRC at the behest of the Allahabad High Court on a reference to investigate into the deprivation of certain poor people of their land holdings by some persons, who acting in collusion, had shown them as dead to grab their lands.
The matter was brought to light following a complaint by Lal Bihari of Azamgarh district, who was shown to be dead and it took him about 18 years to make the authorities accept that he was alive. He was shown in the revenue records as dead in 1976 by his relatives to take possession of his land.
Following his sustained efforts, Lal Bihari could come back to the world of alives in 1994.
Cabinet to consider Manisana proposals
KANPUR, Sept 7 (UNI) Union Labour Minister Satyanarain Jatiya today said his ministry would take a maximum of two months to submit before the Union Cabinet its proposals on Manisana Singh Wage Board recommendations for journalists and non-journalist employees of the newspaper industry.
Talking to newspersons here today, Mr Jatiya said his ministry was preparing the draft proposals on the wage boards report.
Before submitting the draft to the Cabinet, it would be sent to the Ministries of Information and Broadcasting, Finance and Company Affairs for their opinion. Then the draft proposals along with the ministries comments, would be put up before the Cabinet for final approval and subsequent notification.
States urged to enact law on tourism
NEW DELHI, Sept 7 The Tourism Minister, Mr Ananth Kumar, today expressed his concern over the growing victimisation of domestic and foreign tourists in certain parts of the country and asked states to enact a suitable legislation for promoting India as a hassle-free destination.
Inaugurating the one-day
meet of tourism secretaries of states and union
territories, the minister said in view of rise in cases
of cheating, fleecing, over-charging and victimisation of
tourists, it was necessary to have a travel trade Act.
Bhim Singhs plea to
NEW DELHI, Sept 7 The Panthers Party President, Prof Bhim Singh, today urged India and Pakistan to allow a dialogue of genuine representatives of Jammu and Kashmir, including that of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK), in a third country for evolving a consensus on the peaceful solution of the problem.
There is a universal consensus for such a meeting, Prof Bhim Singh, who returned to the Capital last week after attending the 53rd UNDPI annual conference at the UN headquarters, said.
Prof Singh claimed that the Pakistani authorities had
denied permission to human right groups from both PoK and
the Gilgit regions to attend the UNDPI conference which
was held in New York from August 28.
killed in encounter
HC vacates stay
on MPs arrest
road links in Meghalaya
NHRC asks Delhi
to pay compensation
Raipur to be
capital of Chhattisgarh
Man held for
staging his own kidnapping
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