Friday, October 5, 2001, Chandigarh, India





THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
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N A T I O N

Ajit caught on wrong foot
New Delhi, October 4
Barely two days after the Union Agriculture Minister, Mr Ajit Singh, had announced the name of Dr Mangla Rai as the next Secretary in the Department of Agricultural Research and Education and Director-General of ICAR, agriculture scientist Panjab Singh took over the twin posts today.

Modi invited to form government
Gandhinagar, October 4
BJP general secretary Narendra Modi today was invited to form the new government in Gujarat replacing the one led by Keshubhai Patel after he was elected leader of the BJP Legislature Party unanimously.

Date for new registration plates postponed
New Delhi, October 4
The date for the introduction of the proposed new high security registration plates for vehicles in the country has been postponed from September 28, to June 30, 2002, an official note said here today.

SIMI supporters trying to regroup
Lucknow, October 4
An order of last Thursday banning the Student Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) has succeeded in suppressing the virus but has not eliminated it altogether in the biggest state.

Energy conservation Bill gets President’s nod
New Delhi, October 4
President K.R. Narayanan has given his assent to the Energy Conservation Bill, 2001, passed during the monsoon session of Parliament ending August 31, 2001.

Acclaimed young director Karan Johar at the launch of the soundtrack of his film "Kabhie Khushi Kabhi Gam" in Bangalore on Thursday. Acclaimed young director Karan Johar at the launch of the soundtrack of his film "Kabhie Khushi Kabhi Gam" in Bangalore on Thursday. The movie has a multi-star cast comprising Amitabh Bachchan and Jaya Bachchan, Hrithik Roshan, Shah Rukh Khan, Kajol and Kareena Kapoor. — PTI photo

 

 

Students in Hyderabad have a second thought on making the USA their most preferred destination for higher studies.
(28k, 56k)

 

EARLIER STORIES

 

Plan to tighten airport security
Kolkata, October 4
The International Airport Authority of India plans to get vacated the densely populated area adjacent to the local Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International Airport as a security measure against hijacking.

SAD supporters attack Sikh body volunteers
New Delhi, October 4
Activists of a Sikh religious body, who were protesting against ruling Shiromani Akali Dal “indifference” to the desecration of holy book in Punjab, were beaten up severely by SAD supporters in the Rakab Ganj Gurdwara complex here this afternoon.

271 women cops pass out
New Delhi, October 4
It was a proud moment for all those 271 women recruits who passed out as constables from the police training college in the Capital yesterday as the Delhi Police Commissioner Ajay Raj Sharma commended their performance and said their services would be utilised at police stations and airports.


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Ajit caught on wrong foot
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, October 4
Barely two days after the Union Agriculture Minister, Mr Ajit Singh, had announced the name of Dr Mangla Rai as the next Secretary in the Department of Agricultural Research and Education and Director-General of ICAR, agriculture scientist Panjab Singh took over the twin posts today.

Official sources said Mr Ajit Singh while making public the choice of Dr Rai had jumped the gun as the appointment had not been cleared by the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet.

The committee, which had to choose from three candidates, including Dr Mangla Rai and Dr Panjab Singh, opted for the latter.

Dr Panjab Singh was Director of the Indian Agricultural Research Institute (IARI) before being appointed to the highest position in agricultural research. He had also served as Vice-Chancellor of Jawahar Lal Nehru Krishi Vishva Vidyalaya, Jabalpur, and Assistant Director-General, ICAR.

The two posts had fallen vacant after Dr R.S. Paroda quit them in August to take up an international assignment.

The delay in the appointment of a successor to Dr Paroda was caused by the change of ministers in the Agriculture Ministry.

The previous minister, Mr Nitish Kumar, had appointed a high-level search panel headed by noted rice scientist M.S. Swaminathan to recommend the next candidate for the twin posts. Mr Nitish Kumar’s preference was for Dr Rai.

However, when Mr Ajit Singh took over the ministry he reconstituted the panel by expanding the members in the search committee and asked them to do the exercise again. While the panel shortlisted three names for the post, Mr Ajit Singh too preferred to forward the name of Dr Rai to the Department of Personnel and Training for processing the case.

The Appointments Committee of Cabinet, however, went strictly by the recommendations of the two search panels and settled for the name of Dr Panjab Singh.Top

 

Modi invited to form government

Gandhinagar, October 4
BJP general secretary Narendra Modi today was invited to form the new government in Gujarat replacing the one led by Keshubhai Patel after he was elected leader of the BJP Legislature Party unanimously.

Modi (51) will be sworn-in Chief Minister on Sunday.

Governor Sunder Singh Bhandari, in a letter to Modi, also sought from him the list of ministers to be sworn-in according to Raj Bhavan sources.

The Governor’s invitation came after state BJP president Rajendrasinh Rana, accompanied among others by the Chief Minister-designate Modi, central party observer Madan Lal Khurana and party chief whip Vadibhai Patel met Bhandari and handed over a letter from the party MLAs, informing about the unanimous election of Modi as the Legislature Party chief this morning.

Bhandari also congratulated Modi, who will be the state’s 19th Chief Minister, on his election as leader of the Legislature Party.

Meanwhile, BJP President Jana Krishnamurthy thanked Keshubhai Patel, the outgoing Chief Minister, for stepping down after agreeing to the decision of the central leadership. PTITop

 

Date for new registration plates postponed
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, October 4
The date for the introduction of the proposed new high security registration plates for vehicles in the country has been postponed from September 28, to June 30, 2002, an official note said here today.

The note said it had come to the notice of the Central Government that some advertisements had appeared in the newspapers inviting individuals to come forward for being considered as franchise holders by the manufacturers/suppliers and vendors of high security registration plates.

It clarified that so far no high security registration plate has yet been tested and approved by any of the authorised testing agencies of the Central Government.Top

 

SIMI supporters trying to regroup
Satish Misra
Tribune News Service

Lucknow, October 4
An order of last Thursday banning the Student Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) has succeeded in suppressing the virus but has not eliminated it altogether in the biggest state.

While the Uttar Pradesh administrative machinery has rounded up about 80 office-bearers of SIMI, thousands of “ansars” (brothers) and “ikhwans” (sympathisers) are at large and are trying to regroup to keep the work of SIMI going, intelligence sources said.

SIMI was active in almost 35 districts of the state. But Aligarh, Azamgarh, Mau, Lakhimpur Kheri, Mathura, Allahabad, Kanpur, Pratapgarh, Faizabad, Bahraich, Gonda, Gorakhpur, Siddarthnagar, Hardoi, Moradabad, Varanasi and Sant Ravidas Nagar were chosen by SIMI leaders for special focus.

Eastern UP districts were selected because some of these like Bahraich have border with Nepal and because they are adjoining Bihar, intelligence sources pointed out. Many SIMI activists, particularly those who had crossed the age limit of 30, have crossed over to Bihar where the administration, despite a ban from the Centre, had adopted a “benign” approach towards the outfit.

SIMI, which was constituted on April 25, 1977, in Aligarh, initially was part of the Jamaat-e-Islami, but the two developed differences after the demolition of the Babri Masjid on December 6, 1992.

In the wake of Mumbai serial bomb blasts on March 12, 1993, SIMI received a major boost when Pakistan’s ISI decided to develop contacts with it.

The SIMI leadership, after careful planning, decided to adopt a twin approach. On the one hand, SIMI continued to undertake educational and other social activities while on the other, it decided to organise “ex-ansars” for underground activities.

SIMI had prescribed an age limit between 15 and 30 for an active member (ansar). After attaining the age of 30, the membership ceased to exist. These “ex-ansars” became the instrument for launching an illegal, underground and criminal network.

Kanpur, because of its topography and concentration of uneducated and unemployed Muslim youth population, became one of the crucial operational centres of SIMI in the state, a top police official said, adding that districts neighbouring Nepal were other places which were chosen by SIMI for its activities.

Similarly, Bahraich, which has about 58 per cent Muslim population, was chosen because of operational reasons. It was easy for the ISI, which has an extensive network in Nepal, to interact closely here.

The SIMI’s national council passed a resolution in 1993 and declared itself independent. About the same time, it started establishing contacts abroad and became the member of the World Association of Muslim Youth.

SIMI had been asked by its mentors to spread its reach and accordingly had decided earlier this year to develop a girls’ wing also.

In this above background, the strength and reach of the SIMI could not and should not be determined by the number of its office-bearers, a police official, who has been following the activities of the Muslim organisation for quite some time now, said, adding that it required a long-term political-cum-administrative approach to tackle the outfits like SIMI.

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Energy conservation Bill gets President’s nod
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, October 4
President K.R. Narayanan has given his assent to the Energy Conservation Bill, 2001, passed during the monsoon session of Parliament ending August 31, 2001.

With this, the Bill has been notified in the Gazette of India as Act No. 52 of 2001, an official release said here today.

The Act has come into force with immediate effect except the penalty part of it which has been kept in abeyance till the time people concerned are acclimatised about economics and efficacy of conservation of power or for a period of five years.

The Energy Conservation Act, 2001, seeks to set up a bureau of energy efficiency whose governing council will be headed by the Union Minister for Power.

It will work out stringent norms for conservation of energy in all forms wherein there will be no room, whatsoever, for substandard equipment.

The bureau will exercise the powers of the Centre for enforcement of efficient use of energy and its conservation. The states will emulate the Centre at its level.

The Act is a unique law of its kind with India being the second country in the world to have such a law.Top

 

Plan to tighten airport security
Subhrangshu Gupta

Kolkata, October 4
The International Airport Authority of India (IAAI) plans to get vacated the densely populated area adjacent to the local Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International Airport as a security measure against hijacking.

The IAAI wants that residents living in the vicinity of the airport in the Dum Dum Cantonment-Birati area should be shifted elsewhere so that anti-hijacking installations be set up in the vacated land. The Civil Aviation Ministry and the IAAI have sent a proposal in this regard to the state government, an official source said.

The state Chief Secretary, Mr Manish Gupta, however, said he had so far not received any such proposal from the Civil Aviation Ministry. But he admitted that there was a need to vacate certain areas around Kolkata airport, not only for security reasons but also to facilitate better flight services.

He said a vast area adjacent to the airport had been illegally occupied by some persons and the government had failed to vacate the land due to legal obstacles.

Unlike Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai, the Kolkata airport is located near a vastly populated area in Dum Dum-Birati in North 24-Parganas. This area has become an impediment to the expansion of the airport. At one stage, there was a move to bring more areas within the IAAI by acquiring the adjoining land. But it was opposed by the state government.Top

 

SAD supporters attack Sikh body volunteers

New Delhi, October 4
Activists of a Sikh religious body, who were protesting against ruling Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) “indifference” to the desecration of holy book in Punjab, were beaten up severely by SAD supporters in the Rakab Ganj Gurdwara complex here this afternoon.

The SAD workers chased the fleeing demonstrators and pinned two of them down in front of the gurdwara building and rained batons and blows on them, injuring one seriously. The protesters belonged to the Baba Deep Singh Sewak Jatha attached to the Singh Sabha Gurdwara in South Delhi. UNI

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271 women cops pass out
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, October 4
It was a proud moment for all those 271 women recruits who passed out as constables from the police training college in the Capital yesterday as the Delhi Police Commissioner Ajay Raj Sharma commended their performance and said their services would be utilised at police stations and airports.

“It was an exemplary performance by these women recruits, and I am happy that their services would be useful for the Delhi police,” said Mr Ajay Sharma.

The Commissioner also unveiled the multimedia system academic block-II for the trainees and said the trainees could make use of this system in a constructive manner. In fact the Chief Minister of Delhi Ms Sheila Dikshit was supposed to have unveiled this block. Since she had to attend the funeral of late Congress leader Madhavrao Scindia in Gwalior, she could not attend the parade in Delhi.

A visibly happy Kiran Bedi, Joint Commissioner (Training), rejoiced and said, “Today we all got full marks”. Ms Bedi said, “There is no difference between a boy or a girl, when they are trained they would equally do well.”

In fact, this batch is the first largest batch that has passed out from the police training college.

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NATIONAL BRIEFS

DSP, 3 JAWANS KILLED IN BLAST
RANCHI:
A Deputy Superintendent of Police and three jawans were killed and another three jawans injured in a landmine explosion at Bargarh village in Garwan district at around 7.30 a.m. on Thursday. Garwan Superintendent of Police Manjit Singh said the banned Maoist Communist Centre (MCC) activists had a hand in the explosion. DSP Amlesh Kumar Singh along with a police party had gone to the area to undertake search operations and raid the insurgent hideouts. UNI

BHARAT SHAH ALLOWED TESTS
MUMBAI:
A special court has allowed ailing film financier Bharat Shah’s transfer from Lilavati Hospital to Jaslok Hospital for urgent medical tests even as the police alleged that he was adopting tactics since three months to avoid his custody in the prison. Designated Judge A.P. Bhangale on Wednesday allowed to shift Shah to Jaslok Hospital to undergo certain tests on a doctor’s plea. PTI

GOODS TRAIN DERAILS
NAIHATI:
A Kanchapara-bound goods train derailed near here on Thursday affecting train services in the Sealdah Ranaghat main section of the Sealdah Division of the Eastern Railways. According to official sources, a few compartments of the train jumped tracks at 6 a.m. between Naihati and Halisahar blocking both the up and down train services. UNI

SCRIBES' KIN TO GET RS 1 LAKH EACH
DEHRA DUN:
Uttaranchal Chief Minister Nityanand Swami has granted Rs 1 lakh each to the families of Aaj Tak cameraman Gopal Singh Bisht and Indian Express special correspondent Sanjiv Sinha, who died in a plane crash along with Madhavrao Scindia. Gopal Bisht belonged to Matoli village in Pauri district of the state while Sinha was from Dehra Dun. Sinha’s father, a retired Army Colonel, is settled here. UNI
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