Sunday, October 21, 2001, Chandigarh, India





THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
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N A T I O N

BJP session today on terrorism
New Delhi, October 20
A special one-day session of the National Council of the BJP, which will be held tomorrow to commemorate 50 years of existence of the party constituted to serve as a political platform for the RSS after a ban on it following Mahatma Gandhi’s assassination, will focus on terrorism.


Addressing a rally in Meerut, Congress President Sonia Gandhi said terrorism should be eliminated not only from India but the entire world.
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Sonia vows to oust ‘communal’ parties
Meerut (U.P.), October 20
Congress President Sonia Gandhi today intensified the campaign for the coming Assembly poll in Uttar Pradesh, saying that her party would not rest till “those who are playing the communal and casteist card” are thrown out of power.

BJYM to focus on UP poll
New Delhi, October 20
In an ambitious bid to retain political power in the biggest state, the BJP high command has directed its youth wing — the Bharatiya Yuva Janata Morcha — to launch a massive programme, including 9000 cycle yatras, and campaign against terrorism in the coming weeks for influencing the electorate.

Modi to serve notice on Bihar minister
Patna, October 20
Opposition leader in Bihar Assembly S.K. Modi today said he would serve a privilege notice on Urban Development Minister Srinarayan Yadav for allegedly misleading the House on reservation for backward castes in the forthcoming municipal elections.

Fear looms large over ‘puja’ preparations
Patna, October 20
The installation of holy ‘kalash’ in households and “puja pandals” marks the beginning of festive season in Bihar even as apprehension of breach of peace looms large over the state.




The much-awaited Great Mall of Hyderabad proves to be a lacklustre affair failing to attract customers.
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EARLIER STORIES

 
People in Gujarat perform the "Garbha" or "Dandiya" dance, part of the nine-day Navratri festival. 
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Muslims girls in Mumbai are efficiently handling the task of crowd management in pandals crowded by Garbha dancers.
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CRPF orders inquiry into shootout
New Delhi, October 20
The CRPF today ordered a court of inquiry into Thursday night’s shootout at its south west Delhi campus in which a constable was killed and beefed up security at all its complexes across the country even as the police did not rule out either a terrorist angle or an internal feud behind the attack.

Chhota Shakeel ‘losing grip’ on Bollywood
Mumbai, October 20
The overseas-based underworld don Chhota Shakeel was slowly losing his grip over the Hindi film industry following stringent action against those who had so far been maintaining links with the gangster, according to Mumbai police commissioner M.N. Singh.

Dalai Lama to undergo knee surgery
Mumbai, October 20
The Dalai Lama is scheduled to undergo a total knee replacement surgery at Lilavati Hospital in Mumbai on Tuesday. Video: (28k, 56k)

A policeman and hospital staff escort Tibet's exiled spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama (L), as he leaves Lilavati Hospital in Mumbai on Saturday. — Reuters photo
Dalai Lama

 


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BJP session today on terrorism
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, October 20
A special one-day session of the National Council of the BJP, which will be held tomorrow to commemorate 50 years of existence of the party constituted to serve as a political platform for the RSS after a ban on it following Mahatma Gandhi’s assassination, will focus on terrorism.

The session, which will be attended by Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee and Home Minister, Mr L.K. Advani, is going to adopt a political resolution on the issue of terrorism and the prevailing domestic situation.

During the past 50 years since its modest launch as the Bharatiya Jan Sangh on October 21, 1951, in a little known school in the Capital, the BJP has undertaken a long political journey from being a fringe political outfit to a ruling party.

The Bharatiya Jan Sangh was launched as it was strongly felt by RSS supremo (Sarsanghchalak) M.S. Golwalkar that the Sangh parivar, in the wake of the ban, urgently needed a spokesman and that was why he commanded his trusted follower Shyama Prasad Mukherjee to float a political platform.

Dr Mukherjee, who had resigned from the country’s first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru’s Cabinet in protest against the influx of refugees from erstwhile East Pakistan despite the Nehru-Liaqat pact, formed the party and then plunged into the first general elections held in 1952.

The Jan Sangh managed to win three Lok Sabha seats and Dr Mukherjee himself won his seat from Calcutta (South) in West Bengal. Two other members from the Jan Sangh in the first Lok Sabha were Durga C. Banerjee from Jhargram constituency in West Bengal and M.C. Trivedi from Rajasthan.

In 1967, the Jan Sangh earned a major political landmark when it became part of the many state governments, including Uttar Pradesh, where a coalition government was formed with the participation of the Jan Sangh, which was till then considered a communal outfit.

Having been accepted by the socialists and other anti-Congress opposition parties, the Jan Sangh started on a new political journey with post-1974 developments offering the party new political opportunities. The imposition of Emergency in 1975, during which majority of its leaders were in jails, contributed to Jan Sangh’s credibility and political acceptability.

For the first time, the Jan Sangh MPs became ministers in the Morarji Desai government with Mr Atal Behari Vajpayee donning the mantle of the External Affairs Minister and Mr Advani holding charge of the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.

While the Jan Sangh decided to merge into the Janata Party in 1977 after lifting of the Emergency, the hold of the RSS continued on its members who were in the unified party thus raising the issue of dual membership.

On the issue, the erstwhile Jan Sangh members came out of the Janata Party floating the BJP on April 6, 1980, with Mr Vajpayee being its founder president.

Barring a set back in 1984 Lok Sabha elections, when it managed to get only two seats, the BJP appears to march ahead towards its goals unhindered.

In past 17 years the party has emerged as the single largest party and formed the government in 1996 even without a simple majority which lasted only 13 days.

Two years later, the BJP embarked on the path of “realpolitik” deciding to go in for elections in alliance with the regional parties. The move helped it to form the government with the help of its allies.

The fragile coalition lasted merely 13 months as AIADMK leader J. Jayalalitha withdrew support to the Vajpayee government, but then came the Kargil war.

And in 1999 Lok Sabha elections, the BJP returned to power with a comfortable majority.Top

 

Sonia vows to oust ‘communal’ parties
S. Satyanarayanan
Tribune News Service

Meerut (U.P.), October 20
Congress President Sonia Gandhi today intensified the campaign for the coming Assembly poll in Uttar Pradesh, saying that her party would not rest till “those who are playing the communal and casteist card” are thrown out of power.

“Till Uttar Pradesh is got rid of those parties which are dividing people on communal and casteist line, we will not rest,” Mrs Gandhi said addressing a mammoth “pichra varga sangharsh rally” at the historic Victoria Park here.

Cautioning party workers against any slackness, the Congress President said the winds of change are blowing across Uttar Pradesh and that she had blown the conch for the ouster of the BJP today from the very same place where for the first time a call was given to oust Britishers during the freedom movement.

Terming the Vajpayee government at the Centre and the Rajnath Singh government in Uttar Pradesh as “directionless and visionless”, the Congress chief said under their rule the country had suffered a severe decline in industrial and agricultural growth, farmers were not getting adequate price for their produce and unemployment was growing at an alarming rate.

Making a scathing attack on the NDA government at the Centre for reinducting George Fernandes as Defence Minister, she said: “The government has crossed all limits of corruption by reinducting on sensitive posts those persons against whom serious corruption charges have been levelled.”

Mrs Gandhi also charged while on the one hand the BJP had announced reservation for MBCs on the other hand it was harassing Dalits by registering false cases.

Stating that while the Congress was not against providing reservation to MBCs it wanted reservation for poor among the upper castes too, Mrs Gandhi asked the Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister not to make a mockery of the reservation by not creating adequate vacancies in the government.

The mammoth rally, which reflected the show of strength of the Congress in Western Uttar Pradesh, amply reflected the organising capability of local MP Avtar Singh Bhadana, fast emerging as one of the popular Dalit leaders in the state.

The rally was attended by big-wigs of the party, including Mr Ghulam Nabi Azad, Ms Mohsina Kidwai, Mr M.L. Vora, Ms Shiela Dikshit, Mr Balram Jhakar, Mr M.L. Fotedar and UPCC President Sriprakash Jaiswal.Top

 

Congress cautions Centre
Tribune News Service

Meerut (UP), October 20
Congress President Sonia Gandhi today asked the Vajpayee Government to move “cautiously” in the fight against terrorism to ensure that no innocent person is harassed or killed.

“We are passing through a phase where clouds of terrorism are hovering over us. So, we strongly support the fight against terrorism, but we are against killing of innocent people,” Mrs Gandhi said while addressing a “Pichra Varga Sangharsh Rally” here.Top

 

BJYM to focus on UP poll
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, October 20
In an ambitious bid to retain political power in the biggest state, the BJP high command has directed its youth wing — the Bharatiya Yuva Janata Morcha — to launch a massive programme, including 9000 cycle yatras, and campaign against terrorism in the coming weeks for influencing the electorate.

Talking to mediapersons at his residence, BYJM President Shivraj Singh Chauhan said the month long cycle yatras would commence from December 12 and be organised at every panchayat.

Not only this, the youth wing, which held its golden jubilee conference at Agra last week, would also provide a team of five workers which would coordinate booth-level electoral activities, Mr Chauhan said, adding that such teams would also be active in other states like Punjab, Uttaranchal and Jammu and Kashmir where elections were due early next year.

With a view to making political capital out of the growing sense of insecurity among the common man in the backdrop of the USA led global campaign against terrorism, the BYJM has been asked to hold a national campaign from December 1.

Mr Chauhan said his organisation would hold seminars and public awareness programmes against terrorism. Between December 25 to January 2, each Yuva Morcha worker would donate Rupee 1 each to Prime Minister’s Relief Fund for the families of security personnel who have died fighting against terrorism.

With a view to protecting environment, each member of the BYJM would plant a tree in a year and protect it. From now on, a tree would be planted during every official function of the organisation.

Vehemently denying reports about acts of vandalism perpetrated by the BYJM workers at Taj Mahal during the golden jubilee function at Agra last week, Mr Chauhan asserted: “There has been no act of eve-teasing or vandalism by any youth worker of the BJP”.Top

 

Modi to serve notice on Bihar minister

Patna, October 20
Opposition leader in Bihar Assembly S.K. Modi today said he would serve a privilege notice on Urban Development Minister Srinarayan Yadav for allegedly misleading the House on reservation for backward castes in the forthcoming municipal elections.

Mr Yadav had told the Vidhan Sabha on September 27 that the government was ready to provide reservation to the backward castes during the civic polls, he said, adding that the state government, however, had on October 11 informed the state Election Commission that no reservation facility would be given to them in the municipal elections.

There was no reservation for Scheduled Castes and women for the posts of Mayor and Deputy Mayor in the five municipal corporations of Patna, Gaya, Darbhanga, Muzaffarpur and Bhagalpur which was against constitutional provisions, he said. PTI
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Fear looms large over ‘puja’ preparations

Patna, October 20
The installation of holy ‘kalash’ in households and “puja pandals” marks the beginning of festive season in Bihar even as apprehension of breach of peace looms large over the state.

Although the spirit of “puja” in Bihar is similar to that in Bengal, where the occasion has attained the status of a national festival, local variations are seen aplenty here.

Fasting for nine nights in ‘Navratras’ is a hallmark of the puja. Devotees take fruits and milk after sunset, till the immersion of the idols of goddess. Strictures on intake of non-vegetarian food, after installation of the holy kalash, is another special feature in Bihar.

Consuming common salt during the festival period is also a taboo in Bihar but in some cases use of the Sindha variety is allowed.

Clad in their best outfits, people meet friends and relatives in community puja pandals and visit fairs.

People are apprehensive of violence during the immersion of idols. The administration has taken steps to pre-empt any trouble. Processions have been banned along certain stretches in Patna.

However, there has been no announcement of increase in railway berths allotted to Patna so far. UNITop

 

CRPF orders inquiry into shootout

New Delhi, October 20
The CRPF today ordered a court of inquiry into Thursday night’s shootout at its south west Delhi campus in which a constable was killed and beefed up security at all its complexes across the country even as the police did not rule out either a terrorist angle or an internal feud behind the attack.

“Investigations are on. We are probing all angles, including a terrorist strike or an internal incident involving CRPF personnel,” Deputy Commissioner of Police Taj Hassan said.

In a suspected terrorist strike, CRPF constable Nitin Puttewar, who was on patrol duty, was gunned down with an AK-47 assault rifle by an unidentified assailant at the CRPF group centre in Jharoda Kalan.

Later, the assailant fled from the spot through a hole in the complex’s boundary wall.

Meanwhile, CRPF Director General Trinath Mishra said prima facie the incident appeared to be a terrorist strike. “We have ordered a court of inquiry and parameter security has been tightened at CRPF centres across the country,” he added.

Ruling out the possibility of an internal feud, General Mishra said Puttewar was a new recruit and had no history of any dispute with any colleague. “Moreover, neither AK-47 nor the ammunition used in the attack are issued in that unit,” he said.

General Mishra, however, admitted that security precautions, including high boundary walls, were not catered for when the group centre was set up. He said all security arrangements were being reviewed in the wake of the attack. PTITop

 

Chhota Shakeel ‘losing grip’ on Bollywood

Mumbai, October 20
The overseas-based underworld don Chhota Shakeel was slowly losing his grip over the Hindi film industry following stringent action against those who had so far been maintaining links with the gangster, according to Mumbai police commissioner M.N. Singh.

The arrest of the incarcerated film financer Bharat Shah has succeeded in sending a strong signal to those who had been so far nurturing links with Shakeel, Mr M.N. Singh told mediapersons here yesterday. Sustained pressure by the police on Chhota Shakeel gang had forced the don to loosen his grip over Bollywood, the Commissioner claimed. PTI
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Dalai Lama to undergo knee surgery

Mumbai, October 20
The Dalai Lama is scheduled to undergo a total knee replacement (TKR) surgery using mobile bearing knee implants at Lilavati Hospital in Mumbai on Tuesday.

The spiritual leader, who is in the city, underwent a series of tests at Lilavati Hospital on Thursday and will undergo echo studies for cartoid arteries, renal profiling and liver profiling. UNI
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NATIONAL BRIEFS



An aerial view shows rising floodwaters at Karnool town in Cuddapah district, some 420 km south of Hyderabad, on Saturday. — Reuters photo

AP CYCLONE TOLL RISES TO 78                
HYDERABAD:
The toll in the recent cyclone and heavy rains in coastal Andhra Pradesh, rose to 78 on Saturday, even as the state government took up relief and rescue operations on a war footing. Official sources here said Cuddapah reported the highest number of 33 deaths, followed by Kurnool (15), Chittoor (5), Nellore (12), Anantapur (4) and Guntur (6). Another 32 persons were reported missing. UNI

‘SARUS’ FACES EXTINCTION
DEHRA DUN:
The “sarus” crane, the state bird of Uttar Pradesh, will soon be a rare and then possibly an extinct species judging by the decrease in its numbers, opined wildlife experts gathered in the Doon valley’s Wildlife Institute of India for the three-day annual research seminar which concluded here on Saturday. Mr C. Gopal Sundar, a Senior Research Fellow of the institute, read out a paper in which causes for the decreasing numbers of the bird species were discussed. UNI

10 RAJASTHAN BJP MPs GET BAIL
JAIPUR:
Ten BJP Lok Sabha Members from Rajasthan, arrested last night while staging a dharna outside the Governor’s residence here in violation of prohibitory orders, were released on bail on Saturday, the , police said. The MPs were staging the dharna in protest against the alleged anti-farmer attitude of the Congress government in the state. PTI

FAKE CURRENCY SEIZED
SILIGURI (WB):
The Land Customs Department on Friday seized 15 fake notes of Rs 500 denomination at the Panitanki check post bordering Nepal, about 45 km from here. Superintendent of the check post, B.R. Biswas said the notes were seized from an Indian youth, Ranjit Sarkar of Islampur in north Bengal , while he was returning from Nepal. PTI


Prostitutes, along with their children, watch sex worker Chaya Das (holding a mike) perform a street play at a red light district in Kolkata on Saturday. About 100 Indian sex workers gathered in the Sonagachi red light area to appeal to the government to combat the AIDS epidemic sweeping the country. — Reuters

SPECIAL TRAINS FOR SABARIMALA SEASON
KOTTAYAM:
A total of 520 special trains will be put into service in various parts of the country to help devotees visiting Sabarimala, the hill shrine of Lord Ayyappa, during the two-month Mandalam-Makaravilakku season beginning from November 16. This was stated by Minister of State for Railways O. Rajagopal while speaking after inaugurating a seminar on Sabarimala organised by a Malayalam newspaper Mathrubhumi here on Saturday. PTI

HC ISSUES NOTICE TO RAJASTHAN GOVT
JODHPUR:
The Rajasthan High Court on Friday issued show-cause notices to the state government and others on a writ petition alleging that a Pakistani national had become chairman of a municipality. The petitioner Bhura Ram a councillor of the Khudala-Phalna municipality in Pali district alleged that chairman of the municipality, Goma, was a Pakistani national. PTI

HANUMANGARH
CANAL REPAIR:
The work on repair of Gang Canal will start in the first week of November. The supply to the canal from Hussainiwala head in Punjab will be stopped on October 30 for the purpose and the areas which depend on the canal for irrigation supply will be given water from the link channel. Sources said it had been decided to stop the supply to the canal from October 30 as the sowing of rabi crop would be over by then.

10 YRS’ IMPRISONMENT: A local court has sentenced three persons to an imprisonment for 10 years each for illegally possessing poppy husk. The police had arrested Rohtas, Ishwar Singh and Dharampal on October 20, 2000, and seized 300 kg of poppy husk from their possession. A case under Section 15 of the NDPS Act was registered against them. The judge also imposed a fine of Rs 1 lakh each and in case of non-payment of fine, the three will have to undergo an additional imprisonment for one year. 

 

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