Monday, October 15, 2001, Chandigarh, India





THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
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N A T I O N

Government out to curb terrorism: PM
Shastripuram (Agra), October 14
Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee today said the Government was taking all possible steps to root out terrorism and stressed that global pressure needed to be mounted to desist the countries indulged in abetting cross-border terrorism.

CBI crack team to curb terrorism
New Delhi, October 14

In the wake of surprise suicide attacks in the USA, the CBI has constituted a crack team to meet any eventuality in the country because of terrorist activities, agency sources said here today.

Left parties protest against US strikes
Kolkata, October 14
The CPM today took out a “mahamichil” (large procession) in the city against the US aggression in Afghanistan. Left Front partners, including the CPI, the RSP and the Forward Bloc, took part in the protest march.


Security has been beefed up along the border of Rajasthan.
(28k, 56k)

Pak army gets active near border
Jaisalmer, October 14
The Pakistani armed forces have intensified their activities close to the border, ahead of a military exercise code-named “Khabardar-2001”, intelligence sources here said.

Akalis protest against sacrilege
New Delhi, October 14
Various Akali factions today observed a protest day to regret the incidents of sacrilege in Punjab during the past month. While the SAD (Badal), which controls the DSGMC, held a service as a mark of regret at Gurdwara Bangla Sahib, the pro-Tohra faction, Shiromani Akali Dal, Delhi, took out a protest march to express their anguish over the recent acts.




Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee greeting a noted journalist Bapurao Lele at a felicitation function in New Delhi on Sunday. — PTI


EARLIER STORIES

 

Mystery shrouds the death of a male tusker in the Corbett National Park.
(28k, 56k)

Bihar fails to stymie currency racket
Patna, October 14
The circulation of fake currency notes continues in the state, in spite of the attempts to curb it by the Centre and the Bihar Government.

Ministry moots steps on sanitation
New Delhi, October 14
The Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment has written to over 500 District Collectors to accord priority to sanitation besides liberation and rehabilitation of 6.5 lakh scavengers in the country.

IYC holds demonstration
New Delhi, October 14
Indian Youth Congress workers today demonstrated in the Capital to protest against the appointment of Tehelka-tainted Bangaru Laxman as chairman of a parliamentary committee and the move to induct former Defence Minister George Fernandes into the Cabinet expansion scheduled tomorrow.

Speaking at an RSS rally named as Rahtriya Shakti Sangam, RSS chief K.  Sudershan named Pakistan as the number one enemy of India. (28k, 56k)

Pak India’s enemy number one: Sudershan
Jaipur, October 14
RSS chief K.S. Sudershan said here on Saturday that Pakistan is India’s enemy number one and China is enemy number two. Top







 

Government out to curb terrorism: PM
Tribune News Service

Shastripuram (Agra), October 14
Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee today said the Government was taking all possible steps to root out terrorism and stressed that global pressure needed to be mounted to desist the countries indulged in abetting cross-border terrorism.

Welcoming the visible change in the thinking of world community over cross-border terrorism and state-sponsored terrorism after the September 11 terror attacks in the USA, Mr Vajpayee declared that India would not compromise on fighting terrorism and said the country was ready to face “any challenge.”

“There will be no compromise in fighting terrorism. Our security forces are strong and we are ready to face any challenge” Mr Vajpayee said while addressing a national convention of the Bhartiya Janata Yuva Morcha (BJYM) here.

On the reinduction of Mr George Fernandes as the Defence Minister even as he has not been cleared by Justice Venkatswami Commission, he said, “Government decision making should not be so slow that we are not in a position to meet the present challenge.”

The Prime Minister said the government was taking action against the corrupt persons and making stringent laws to deal with corruption. Mr Vajpayee shared the dias with former BJP President Bangaru Laxman.

Mr Laxman, who was garlanded amidst cheers, was recently made the chairman of a parliamentary committee. Political observers are attaching significance to the presence of the former BJP chief on the dias along with the Prime Minister.

Making a scathing attack on Pakistan, Mr Vajpayee said the country which was not ready acknowledge its indulgence in cross-border terrorism was forced to admit that the suicide bomb attack on the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly was an act of terrorism.

Assuring the country that there won’t be any compromise in fighting terrorism, Mr Vajpayee stressed that the country should be united in its efforts. In this context, he thanked the Opposition parties for extending their support in this hour of crisis.

Without naming the USA, he said while India was battling terrorism for the past 12 years, it was not ready to acknowledge that but one strike on it had changed their perception.

Urging the youths to cooperate with the government to root out terrorism, the Prime Minister cautioned them against those forces who are trying to create communal tension after the September 11 attacks.

The Prime Minister admitted the failure of the government to effectively implement various government schemes at the village level and asked the youths, to help it to take the programmes to the rural sector.

“Don’t depend too much on the government. We are trying our level best, but the government has its own procedures to follow,” he said.

The Prime Minister said the government would soon set up a national youth commission to deal with the issues concerning the country’s young population. The government was also working on a national youth policy, he added.
Top

 

CBI crack team to curb terrorism

New Delhi, October 14
In the wake of surprise suicide attacks in the USA, the CBI has constituted a crack team to meet any eventuality in the country because of terrorist activities, agency sources said here today.

The 12-member team would be functioning under the core group formed on September 15 to assess and review the entire information available on the activities of various terrorist groups, the sources said.

The Crack Team would be headed by the Additional Director of CBI, Mr Vijay Shanker, who also heads the 20-member core group that was formed immediately after the suicide attacks in New York and Washington.

The other members of the Crack Team will also be from the agency and have vast experience in terrorism related cases, the sources said.

The sources said a data bank had already been created on the activities of various terrorist groups, including Lashker-e-Toiba, Harkat-ul-Mujahideen with their links worldwide besides activities of underworld gangs, including that of Dawood Ibrahim, who is alleged to have masterminded the serial bomb blasts in Mumbai in 1993, which left hundreds of people dead.

The crack team could be deputed to any place where there was a national crisis, the sources said, adding that it would be deputed immediately in case of a major bomb blast, hijacking or kidnapping.

The sources said the team would liaise between the core group of the CBI and the state government where such an incident takes place.

The Core Group has decided to convene coordination meetings of Deputy Inspector General level officers from various terrorism-affected states periodically to exchange information and for ensuring better cooperation, the agency sources said. PTI
Top

 

Left parties protest against US strikes
Our Correspondent

Kolkata, October 14
The CPM today took out a “mahamichil” (large procession) in the city against the US aggression in Afghanistan. Left Front partners, including the CPI, the RSP and the Forward Bloc, took part in the protest march.

Despite being a Sunday, a majority of the shops and market complex were open for the ensuring puja festival. However, trade was affected, because of the procession. The Trinamool Congress, Congress and the BJP, opposed to the CPM decision to take out the procession, said it was politically motivated.

“Peace and no war” was the slogan of the processionists as they came out from south Kolkata and marched towards Sham Bazar in north Kolkata. The Chief Minister, Mr Buddhadev Bhattacharya, Biman Basu and Mr Anil Biswas, besides other prominent personalities from various walks of life took part in the procession.

The Chief Minister said they were against the terrorist attacks in New York and Washington, but “we are equally against the US attacks on innocent people of Afghanistan”.
Top

 

Sonia cautions government

New Delhi, October 14
Congress President Sonia Gandhi has cautioned the government to be vigilant, saying that she had heard “disturbing” reports about the growing “resentment and bitterness among certain sections” of society following US military strikes against Afghanistan.

“I have heard rather disturbing reports about the daily increase of resentment and bitterness among certain sections of our people. Even a minor incident can lead to a major communal conflagration. This we must avoid at all cost”, Mrs Gandhi said in a letter to Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee.

Stating that the country was passing through turbulent times, Mrs Gandhi said “in some ways the situation is perilous and could get out of hand unless extreme caution and wisdom are exercised by all concerned”. Besides, she said, disturbances in several parts of Pakistan as was being televised round the clock were bound to affect Indian minorities.

Mrs Gandhi wrote to Mr Vajpayee that there was a possibility of the Pakistan Government being unable to control events within Pakistan. “This is bound to have an effect on our minority community.” she said.

In another letter to Mr Vajpayee, Mrs Gandhi expressed concern over the reported exercise by the NCERT and the Ministry of Human Resource Development for developing a new syllabus and suggested that these must be scrutinised by an expert panel. PTI
Top

 

Pak army gets active near border

Jaisalmer, October 14
The Pakistani armed forces have intensified their activities close to the border, ahead of a military exercise code-named “Khabardar-2001”, intelligence sources here said.

Senior Pakistan army officers are making regular visits to the region to oversee arrangements for the impending exercise, earlier scheduled for last month but was postponed to this month-end after the September 11 terror attacks in the US, they said.

The Pakistan army and air force would carry out joint exercises, 15-20 km from the border with India, they added.

Among the officers who visited the region in the recent past were Major General Abdul Qadir Baloch, later removed from the army’s Sindh command, the army’s Punjab range Director General Maj. Gen. Khursheed Alam, 5 Corps Commander Lt. Gen. Tariq Wasim Qazi and the Director General of Sindh police, Aftab Nabi.

Further, sources said the military exercise was initially code-named “High Mark 2001’’, but had been renamed to match the mood in the South-Asian region after the USA began operations last Sunday in Afghanistan. UNI
Top

 

Akalis protest against sacrilege
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, October 14
Various Akali factions today observed a protest day to regret the incidents of sacrilege in Punjab during the past month.

While the SAD (Badal), which controls the DSGMC, held a service as a mark of regret at Gurdwara Bangla Sahib, the pro-Tohra faction, Shiromani Akali Dal, Delhi, took out a protest march to express their anguish over the recent acts.

DSGMC president Avtar Singh Hit said, “Those who were involved in the acts will have to pay a huge price for their wrongdoings. He said the anti-social elements could be using some deras to create disturbance. “Such deras should be immediately closed and their controllers put behind the bars,” he told a select group of newspersons.

Union Minister Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa also attended the function. The Tohra faction Delhi unit head, Mr Paramjit Singh Sarna, said the Sikh community was sad and anguished over the recurring incidents of sacrilege in Punjab.
Top

 

Bihar fails to stymie currency racket

Patna, October 14
The circulation of fake currency notes continues in the state, in spite of the attempts to curb it by the Centre and the Bihar Government.

The startling revelation about the circulation of fake notes was made in Sitamarhi and Saharsa districts in the state during the last 48 hours even as jawans of the Special Services Bureau (SSB) had been deployed on the directive of the Centre along the Indo-Nepal border to check pumping of fake notes from across the border.

The Sitamarhi police seized fake Indian notes of Rs 6 lakh from two smugglers in the district last Wednesday. Nepalese fake currency was also recovered from them, a district report quoting official sources said.

A Saharsa report quoting official sources said that the circulation of fake notes in Saharsa, Supaul, Madhepura, Araria, Kishanganj, Purnea and Katihar in the Kosi region had once again got momentum. A few fake notes of Rs 500 denomination were seized from Beerpur branch of State Bank of India (SBI) recently.

The Police Superintendent of Vaishali Shobha Ahotkar said that fake notes worth more than Rs 1 lakh were recovered from two persons in the district last month. She said that the nabbed persons were operating in different states through their inter-state links.

Two people were arrested with fake notes in Pirbahore district of the state capital last month, sources added. UNI

Top

 

Ministry moots steps on sanitation
Tripti Nath
Tribune news Service

New Delhi, October 14
The Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment has written to over 500 District Collectors to accord priority to sanitation besides liberation and rehabilitation of 6.5 lakh scavengers in the country.

While emphasising that sanitation, liberation and rehabilitation of scavengers is imperative for the meaningful and sustainable development of the country, Secretary, Asha Das has requested the Collectors to take up the task as a “mission by launching a public movement.”

The Secretary has also suggested steps as issuance of orders under various statutes/rules to convert existing dry latrines into water-borne flush latrines, liaison with local bodies to prevent construction of houses without proper sanitation facilities and ensure a modern garbage-disposal system. “The nation loses almost Rs 10,000 crore annually on account of diseases arising out of poor sanitary conditions.” she added.

The favourable intervention of the ministry stems from its concern for the much-discriminated scavengers who belong to the Scheduled Caste. “We have been trying to tell the ministry of Urban Development to ensure conversion of dry latrines into wet latrines and construction of flush latrines in every household. We want them to ask municipal bodies to issue notices to all persons to convert dry latrines into wet latrines in a time-bound manner”, Ms Das said.

Sources in the ministry said that Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh pose a problem of dry latrines and manual handling of night soil. Uttar Pradesh has the maximum number of dry latrines, followed by Madhya Pradesh. 
Top

 

IYC holds demonstration
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, October 14
Indian Youth Congress workers today demonstrated in the Capital to protest against the appointment of Tehelka-tainted Bangaru Laxman as chairman of a parliamentary committee and the move to induct former Defence Minister George Fernandes into the Cabinet expansion scheduled tomorrow.

The IYC activists led by President Randeep Singh Surjewala raised anti-Fernandes and anti-Bangaru Laxman slogans and criticised the government for its policies to compromise with corruption.

Mr Surjewala said the BJP-led government “move to take back the people tainted with corruption amounted to giving encouragement to corruption.”

The activists, who tried to march towards the Prime Minister’s House were stopped and taken to Parliament Street police station.

The Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee also held a demonstration against the move to re-induct Mr Fernandes into the Vajpayee Cabinet.
Top

 

Pak India’s enemy number one: Sudershan
Our Correspondent

Jaipur, October 14
RSS chief K.S. Sudershan said here on Saturday that Pakistan is India’s enemy number one and China is enemy number two.

Sudershan said that the fact that Pakistan can never be India’s friend must be understood well.

The RSS chief was speaking at a rally of RSS swyamsevaks. According to official estimates, about 60,000 swayamsevaks participated at the rally.

RSS volunteers, before assembling at the final culmination venue staged a march in the state capital.

Mr Sudershan said India should be cautions while dealing with Pakistan and China. Justifying India’s nuclear weapons programme he said that China had developed arms which can hit any target in India.
Top

 
NATIONAL BRIEFS

50-KG IED SEIZED FROM TRAIN IN ASSAM
TINSUKIA (ASSAM):
A major rail disaster has been averted by security forces who recovered a 50-kg improvised explosive device (IED) from a compartment of Brahmaputra Mail, official sources said. During routine check of the compartments at Dibrugarh Railway station on Saturday, Army men detected the explosive kept inside a trunk. PTI

PHILANTHROPIST JAL MEHTA DEAD
PUNE:
Padmabhushan Dr Jal Minocher Mehta, 75, a philanthropist and renowned surgeon, devoted to the care and rehabilitation of leprosy patients, died here on Saturday after a brief illness, his family sources said. He is survived by his wife, Dr Mehru Mehta, also a renowned cancer surgeon and social worker. PTI

RARE VULTURES VISIT JODHPUR
JODHPUR:
With the onset of winter, six rare species of vultures have arrived here and started building their nests, Mr Anil Kumar Changgani, researcher working under a Indo-US project on vultures at the Jai Narain Vyas University, said here on Sunday. These vultures visit the city due to the ideal natural surroundings of crags and trees, and the availability of food, he added. PTI

18-HOUR STRIKE CALL BY MPLF
IMPHAL:
The Manipur Peoples Liberation Front (MPLF) called an 18-hour general strike from the Sunday midnight in protest against the “forcible annexation of Manipur to the country”. The front directed the people to remain indoors during the strike and lit candle at 7 p.m. on Monday. UNI

RELICS FOUND IN GOA VILLAGE
PANAJI:
The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) has unearthed relics of a fortified town at Chandor village in Goa, indicating that this region served as the capital during the times of Bhojas and Kadambas. The study conducted by the ASI team comprising Dr Rao, Mr Manoj Saxena, Mr Shriguru Bagi and Dr M. Kasturi Bai revealed three developmental stages while cutting across an area of about 24m x 6m of the fort wall. UNI

4 HELD IN RAIDS ON AUDIO SHOPS
NEW DELHI:
Four persons were arrested and pirated audio cassettes and recording equipment worth several lakh rupees seized by the Delhi Police following raids at shops in the Model Town and Azadpur areas of the city this week. Cases under the Copyright Act, 1957, have been filed against the arrested persons: Lalit Budhiraja, Suriender, Jitender and Ajay. The raids were conducted at the shops at the instance of Super Cassettes Industries. UNI

11 DIE AS JEEP FALLS INTO WELL
VIDISHA (MP):
Eleven persons, including five women and four children, were drowned when a jeep carrying 16 persons fell into a well near Amarpur village, about 30 km from here on Saturday, the police said. The police, with the help of local villagers, managed to rescue five persons. The mishap took place while the driver of the ill-fated vehicle was reversing it. The passengers from Bhopal were returning after visiting a Lord Hanuman temple. PTI
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