Man walks out alive from tower debris
Schroeder out, Germany to get first woman chancellor
King Gyanendra gags Nepal media
Liz Hurley to marry Arun Nayar next year
Muzaffarabad (PoK), October 10
In Muzaffarabad, the capital PoK, an Associated Press reporter saw shopkeepers scuffle with people who were trying to break locks of shuttered businesses. They beat each other with sticks and threw stones, and some people were left with bleeding head wounds. No police personnel were in the area to keep order.
Residents also reported that people had started looting deserted homes and even gas stations. Survivors complained of shortages of food and water and there appeared to be little if any official coordination of relief in the devastated city.
About 2,000 people huddled around camp fires through the cold night in a soccer field on the city’s university campus, where most buildings had collapsed and hundreds were feared trapped inside.
Soldiers with shovels and iron bars were trying to burrow into the concrete to find survivors.
‘’Not a single government agency has done anything for two days. People are taking out the bodies by themselves,’’ said Shamsher Ali, a resident.
‘’Government leaders are giving a false impression in the media. There’s been no rescue work,’’ one angry man shouted.
A small team of soldiers with spades over their shoulders was seen heading down a main street on Monday morning.
‘’They’ve just arrived,’’ said newspaper reporter Raja Iftikhar. ‘’For two days the military and police weren’t operating.’’
The earthquake is the worst natural disaster in Pakistan’s turbulent history since its formation in 1947 as a homeland for South Asia’s Muslims.
The city has no power, and electric lines hang down over the roads in tangles. Roads are cracked while some have collapsed down slopes.
Roads leading to the city from elsewhere in Pakistan have been blocked by landslides.
Children with grubby bandages on heads and hands are everywhere.
Hundreds of Muzaffarabad people working elsewhere have been streaming back to the city from other parts of Pakistan to find relatives.
‘’I can’t recognize this place,’’ said one man arriving back. People say they have nothing and approach visitors asking for money, medicine and water. — Agencies
Man walks out alive from tower debris
Islamabad, October 10
A survivor in his 20s, said to be named Hammad, was brought out unscathed from the mountain of rubble with the help of the British rescue team. The young man emerged chanting Allaho Akbar (God is great) on a half-moonlit night provoking an instant outburst of joy coupled with several rounds of loud applause by hundreds of people present at the site. For a couple of minutes one could only hear Naara-i-Takbir: Allaho Akbar and tears of joy welled up in many eyes. A battery of cameramen and reporters from the local and foreign media raced towards the ambulance to capture the ‘miracle’ moment. Within seconds paramedics shifted the weak-looking survivor into the ambulance and it zoomed past the crowd waiting there for hours to just catch a glimpse of the survivors.
Apparently just an hour before he was recovered, Hammad had shouted from inside that he was alive. On hearing the shouts the rescue team immediately threw in a mike through a small opening from where came his cry. He conveyed to them through the device that he was alive and unhurt.
Then the team started to dig a tunnel in the concrete to pull him out. It worked.
Berlin, October 10
His Social Democrats said they had massively approved a deal with Merkel’s Christian Democrats that would allow her to become the country’s first female chancellor at the head of a left-right administration.
Its first task will be to revive the battered economy, crippled by sluggish growth and chronically high unemployment currently of more than 11 percent.
Germany’s two biggest parties will share cabinet seats fairly equally, but it remains unclear how the division of responsibilities will affect Ms Merkel’s ability to run what is likely to be a fractious government.
Ms Merkel’s confirmation as Chancellor will cap a remarkable rise for the daughter of a Protestant pastor who moved to communist East Germany in the 1950s.
She would be the first woman at the head of a major European country since Edith Cresson’s brief stint as French premier in the early 1990s.
The deal was hammered out amid intense negotiations in a three-week battle for supremacy after inconclusive September 18 general elections.
According to sources , the centre-left party will take the key ministries of foreign affairs, finance, labour and justice, as well as environment, aid and cooperation, health and transport.
Schroeder, 61, swept to power in 1998 in a coalition with the Greens on the back of a demand for change after 16 years of conservative rule under Mr Helmut Kohl.
But despite his charisma, he lost the confidence of voters after failing to bring down unemployment or to dispel a sense of malaise stifling the national mood.
Seven years on, with his government struggling to push through sweeping but deeply unpopular structural reforms to revive the economy, his party won just 34.2 percent of the vote in an election he had called a year early in a bid to secure a fresh mandate for his controversial reforms.
Germany has not had a coalition of the country’s two biggest parties since the 1960s. — AFP
Kathmandu, October 10
The ordinance was endorsed by the cabinet when it was proposed in mid-May, but was put on hold due to the protests against it by media rights outfits, sources close to the Federation of Nepalese Journalists said.
It was enacted yesterday and has provisions to sentence publishers and editors up to one year imprisonment for publishing banned items.
The fine for publishing banned items has been increased 10 fold to Rs 1 lakh and that for publishing, translating and importing items aiding `terrorists’ has now been made Rs 5 lakh from the earlier Rs 50,000.
The ordinance also puts stops on the publishing of news items that fetches the King or his kin hatred or disrespect. This check was earlier just on news against the King.
It also restricts persons from owning more than two media outlays. For instance, the Kantipur publications, which owns newspapers, FM stations and Kantipur TV now will now have to close down one of the three outlays.
The ordinance has provision to ban FM stations from broadcasting news-oriented programmes. This challenges the Supreme Court order restraining the government from banning news broadcasts through FM stations.
Media rights groups have strongly criticised the laws and threatened to intensify their agitation. — PTI
Liz Hurley to marry Arun Nayar next year
London, October 10 Confirming her marriage details for the first time, actress and model Hurley, 40, told The Sun: "We want to marry in February, possibly on Valentine's Day." The former long-time girlfriend of heartthrob Hugh Grant said she was relieved that Arun had finally secured a divorce from his Italian wife Valentina Pedroni, which allowed them to wed. She added: "Every time I go to Mumbai, I get a dreadful bacterial disease and end up on a drip. That's the last thing I need on my honeymoon." Liz said Arun is a great stepfather. "He's delightful. Arun's like a dad, closer to Damian than his own dad."
London, October 10
Confirming her marriage details for the first time, actress and model Hurley, 40, told The Sun: "We want to marry in February, possibly on Valentine's Day." The former long-time girlfriend of heartthrob Hugh Grant said she was relieved that Arun had finally secured a divorce from his Italian wife Valentina Pedroni, which allowed them to wed.
She added: "Every time I go to Mumbai, I get a dreadful bacterial disease and end up on a drip. That's the last thing I need on my honeymoon."
Liz said Arun is a great stepfather. "He's delightful. Arun's like a dad, closer to Damian than his own dad." — IANS