Thursday, May 31, 2001, Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

Dhananjoy not to form govt

Imphal, May 30
Progressive Democratic Alliance (PDA) leader and Manipur Assembly Speaker Sapam Dhananjoy Singh tonight withdrew his claim to form the government in the state.

Talking to UNI, Mr Dhananjoy said he had sent his withdrawal letter to state Governor Ved Prakash Marwah this evening.

Dr Dhananjoy had staked his claim on May 28, soon after he learnt that the BJP and Samata Party leaders from the state had decided after talks in New Delhi not to form a government in Manipur.

The PDA’s withdrawal now puts the ball in Mr Marwah’s court.

Earlier, in the day, Mr Dhananjoy met Mr Marwah at Raj Bhavan and sought one more day to submit the list of legislators supporting him. But Mr Marwah reiterated his advice that Mr Dhananjoy resign from the post of Speaker before staking claim to form the government.

A press note from Raj Bhavan said that the Governor told him that he had a problem in taking cognizance of his claim as long as he continued in that post.

Mr Dhananjoy is reportedly frustrated with the infighting among the MSCP legislators and lacks their unanimous support. Earlier, talking to UNI he had said, “I don’t have any intention to cause defection in the BJP Legislature Party because I do not enjoy an unanimous support from the MSCP. Then why should I break the BJP?’’

MSCP sources also informed that the party now had three factions.

In a related development this evening, the MSCP (C) faction dealt a severe blow to the tottering PDA when party president Th. Chaoba Singh decided to withdraw from the alliance. In a faxed letter to the Governor, Mr Chaoba Singh, currently in New Zealand, said his party neither wished to support nor participate in any government other than the one led by it.

The withdrawal of claim by Mr Dhananjoy is a definite pointer that Manipur is heading towards President’s rule. Meanwhile in Delhi, caretaker Chief Minister Radhabinod Koijam today urged Mr Marwah to recommend President’s rule in the state in view of its ‘fluid’ situation. UNI


Two students killed in roof collapse
Our Correspondent

Mansa, May 30
Two students lost their lives while five students and a teacher were injured when the roof of a school building at Budhlada in the district collapsed today. Due to the collapse, which occurred at Arjun Model School, teacher Rekha Rani and 24 students were buried. People of the locality rushed to the spot and extricated the victims after removing the debris.

Two of the seriously injured students were rushed to Pawan Nursing Home at Budhlada, where they succumbed to their injuries. The deceased have been identified as Manpreet Kaur (4), daughter of Krishan Singh and Gurpreet Singh (4), son of Sukhwinder Singh.

Three injured students were rushed to Civil Hospital, Mansa, while two were admitted to Primary Health Centre, Budhlada.


25 killed as train, bus collide

Lucknow, May 30
At least 25 passengers were killed and several others injured when the vehicle carrying them collided with a train at the Ballia Buzurg unmanned crossing in Lakhimpur district today.

The police said the mishap occurred when the ill-fated bus hit the Mailani-Lucknow Inter-City Express at 1.54 p.m. at the crossing, about 150 km from the state capital.

Senior police and district administration officials rushed to the site.

The injured, some of them in serious condition, were admitted to the Lakhimpur district hospital. UNI

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